Baltimore-based photographer Ben McNutt unveiled a new series of images after he traveled to Turkey to document oil wrestling. The photographer who expresses his love for the sport and his intrigue with aspects of masculinity when it comes to wrestling depicts the athletes as they battle, fully oiled and somewhat subtly erotic.
The series is just one part of McNutt’s ongoing research in wrestling and masculinity.
“After six years involved in this project, I believe that wrestling provides a space for progressive aspects of masculinity to be practiced. Wrestling culture is able to provide a context wherein its athletes are pulling, pushing, and ignoring aspects of traditional masculinity willing or unwitting. Because of wrestling’s incredible relationship with history, religion, athleticism, culture, nationalism, I find this belief to be an incredibly powerful one. Though my work on wrestling stands as a part of a larger body that chronicles the human fascination with the athletic form, my use of photography extends this conversation by intentionally framing our perspective. I will continue my series on wrestling with no end in sight, not only because I’ve found myself as a wrestling fan, but because my beliefs compel me to do.” Ben McNutt
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