Arrival of the sumo wrestlers

3 minutes

Looking like time travellers from a bygone era, sumo wrestlers gather for a competition

The bashoiri – the arrival of sumo wrestlers before a tournament – unfolds outside a venue in Tokyo. With the sumo lifestyle still dictated largely by tradition and the Japan Sumo Association, the wrestlers emerge from cars that they cannot drive, wearing robes that denote their rank, and sporting chonmage haircuts, looking splendidly anachronistic as they interact with mobile phones and pose for photos with fans. Colourful and carefully crafted to highlight the hierarchy of sumo wrestlers, Mari Shibata’s film is a brief glimpse at the unusual intersection of tradition and modern celebrity that this sport occupies in Japanese culture.

Director: Mari Shibata

Website: NOWNESS

Essay/Architecture & Landscape
Intimate spaces

In his Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard created a philosophy of at-homeness, rich in emotion and memory

Gillian Darley

An unlikely triumph

In its first century the American higher-education system was a messy, disorganised joke. How did it rise to world dominance?

David Labaree