|Photo © Richard Atrero de Guzman (aka Bahag) - All Rights Reserved|
One of the great summer festivals of Japan’s northeastern Tōhoku region, Sōma-Nomaoi dates back over a thousand years and is held every year for three days during the month of July. Some 500 armored and helmeted warriors ride on horseback, and take part in this military recreation.
There are primarily two main attractions during the festival: the Koshiki Kacchu Keiba and the Shinki Sodatsusen. The former event involve 12 samurais in their armor who race over a distance of 1,000 meters. The latter event involves several hundred samurais on horses that compete for the 40 shrine flags known as "goshinki" that are shot into the air with fireworks.
Richard Atrero de Guzman (also known as Bahag) was recently at the festival and produced a number of photographs viewable on his Photoshelter website.
Traveling the globe for the past eight years, he was commissioned by core civic institutions like the United Nations and the Drik Picture Library in Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is represented internationally by M4 Collective and Bahaghari World Photography Philippine. He is also a stringer for Anadolu Agency & RT Ruptly TV, a German international news agency.