Shamil Tanna

Shamil Tanna’s new project sees him returning to Africa to explore the traditional, ancient Senegalese form of wrestling.

Wrestlers participate in various rites and rituals prior to duelling in Laamb, they prepare their bodies physically for a fight but they engage with Marabouts and spirits in order to win it.

During the ceremony, the wrestler, surrounded by drummers and singers, dances all around the arena, donning “Gris-Gris”, various esoteric charms or amulets around his hands, legs, and waistline to protect him from evil spirits and other fighters’ spells.

The premise of Laamb is as simple now as it was centuries ago, force your opponent to the ground first. Events like the one Shamil captured in Joal Fadiout are a spectacle of sport, culture, and community.