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A new photo essay captures the grim world of Brazil’s football hooligans

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Around the world they go by many names: firms, barra bravas, ultras. In Brazil the most hardcore and violent fan groups are known as torcidas organizadas. In 2009 photographer Gabriel Uchida began a project titled “FotoTorcida” and turned his lens away from the players on the pitch. Focusing on the fan culture surrounding the game, Uchida’s photos caught the eyes of torcida members who invited him deeper into their world. Since that time Brazilian society has become increasingly fractured and violence between the torcida organizadas has become more frequent, sometimes lethal. According to Uchida the photographs are a reflection of the violence and weapons that are part of the reality of daily life and football in most South American countries.

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