Manga & Sumo… in Gosport

Yesterday was an interesting day. My mum spotted a manga exhibition advertised in nearby Gosport and we decided to go and check it out. I’m not a huge manga fan, but I do appreciate good art. Still, it wasn’t the manga that sold me on going to the exhibition… it was the promise of sumo!

Mange exhibition and sumo wrestling this way!

The exhibition was at Gosport Gallery, and is on until June 25th. Here’s the blurb:

The unique graphic art-form of Manga is explored through its manifestation in everyday life in the 21st century in this new exhibition. It explores Manga’s influence in shaping contemporary culture, with something for everyone, from kids to adults; it offers a whistle stop introduction to Manga for novices as well as plenty to keep hard core fans immersed. Visitors will discover Cute Manga, Action Manga and how Manga has influenced art, fashion and design.

(I borrowed this picture from Urbis.)

The exhibition was small, but lovely, and I discovered some artists I wasn’t familiar with before.

One group of Shefield-based designers/illustrators I really took a fancy to were Tado. You can see more about them on their website here, or why not check out their blog. Their art is soooooo cute it almost turns me into a squealing Japanese girl. I love it!

I also really liked an artist called Emma Wyre. Her stuff is kind of dark, and she makes these really quirky dolls which I think are wonderful.

I would love to post pictures of work by the artists I have mentioned, but of course I couldn’t take photos in the exhibition. So, if you’re interested, please visit their websites at the links above.

As I said, one of the reasons I was keen to visit Gosport yesterday was the mention of sumo. Yes, you heard me right, sumo. But, not sumo like you have ever seen it before…

For one day only, the gallery was also giving visitors the chance to “Be a Sumo Wrestler!”. “Inspired by our Manga exhibition – all the fun of Sumo without having to put on a pound! The foam packed Super Sumo Suits will make you the size of a huge, clumsy Japanese wrestler. Push, pull, trip, or throw your opponent out of the coloured circle on the thick, padded mat, or force them onto their back.“.

The guy working at the exhibition said it had been a really slow morning, and seemed delighted to dress two crazy women up in Sumo Suits:

Me & mum in sumo suits

We were a bit scared of hurting each other so we didn’t really get into a wrestle, plus the suits weighed a ton and we were really hot! It was excellent fun though!

Sadly, the Sumo Suits were only available yesterday, but the manga exhibition is still running until June 25th. So if you’re in the area, why not pop down there and check it out – it’s free! 😉

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