mark mann

The Lucha Libre Project
Public Story
The Lucha Libre Project
Credits: mark mann
Updated: 12/13/12

I travelled to Mexico City to capture the masked personalities of "lucha Libre" with my vintage Graflex super-D camera from the 1940s.  I also shot the up-and-comers—young boys who are just getting into the sport—as well as the people who surround them: wives, mothers, and trainers. Finally, I also profiled the lucha libre legends, who are retired but still on the scene.

There is a fabulous culture built up all around lucha libre, folklore and Urban Legends. My hope is that by photographing the people behind the sport—and the fans who support it—I will be able to document a moment in time: The old the new and what's in-between.

My large-format camera shoots a 4 x 5 images. The camera itself is large and has a big presence in front of the subject, which has an interesting effect on them: My subjects' curiosity about the camera allows me to capture their portrait before they have had a chance to pose too much.

I have been shooting Fuji instant film which, with my vintage lens, imparts a quality that will suit the wrestlers perfectly. There's a warmth and depth of field that is achieved in a way a digital capture could not.