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Bate Bola : Sweet and violent clowns from Rio de Janeiro


Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares, Text by Julie Berranger

When the focus of the carnival is set on the glamorous Sambodrome and its samba parades, curious creatures overflow the overlooked suburban streets of Rio, rekindling life in these forlone areas. The phenomenon set in motion dazes the eye. It truly follows the tradition of street-art: vivacious, inventive, ever evolving. It is here that lies Rio's carnival's real originality. Yet this favela-born expression continues unacknowledged by the Brazilian media and high society. It is difficult to understand how such a loud and bright movement could remain muffled. Bate Bola, or "hit the ball" in Portuguese is indeed loud and bright. Each year, gangs soaring up to a thousand members orchestrate their much-awaited "Saida" (exit in Portuguese) in a flamboyant mise-en-scène, thus presenting the year's new theme and costume design. Much like thunderous hounds, these bright clowns roar through the suburbs thrashing their ball on the ground, seizing the senses. They both delight and terrorize screaming children all at once, much like a rollercoaster ride. Yet in spite of their manly tribal performance, their costumes are oddly feminine. Their dresses' bright colors and exaggerated volumes actually make them look like over-sized lollipops. The tainted plumes, Disney-like drawings on the shiny materials add to their irresistible appeal, while the peach or strawberry perfume they copiously splash on constitutes the final touch of an almost unbearable sweetness. The pink clowns are all geared up to display their manly-hood. And the rivalry between gangs is sometimes difficult to contain as it sometimes erupts in outbursts of sheer violence. On one of the walls in Marechal Hermes, one of the main centers of Bate Bola, a graffiti pays tribute to the dead members of the oldest and most violent gang "Agunia". Some guys carry guns to protect themselves, explains Leo, one of the most important painters of the movement. See, some are violent by nature. This is why they choose names like "Cobra", "Taliban", "Agunia". Some of them even include the swastika in their design! Imagine these big black guys hoping around all wrapped up in swastikas! They have no idea what it really stands for, just that it's bad! Leo himself decided to wait to set up his own gang until he had graduated from the police academy although he already was a respected designer in the field. "The only thing people notice is the brutality. This is why some gangs replaced the ball with an umbrella to openly show they were non-violent. The rivalry is omnipresent but most of the time it is limited to a playful competition. its part of the game!" explains Leo. True enough, the clowns scrutinize each other down the very last detail. "The design of each dress is very complex. They use ultra modern techniques", explains Aline Gualda, Rio's only researcher in the field. "Some gangs want to be the most mobile, others the most voluminous, others want to have the sharpest theme. They all spend a whole year studying, perfecting the past years designs. They inspire each other. It's a bubbling, live art! Their costumes are pure gold!" The designers indeed are obsessive. "We mingle with the people in the street. We go right in there. So our costumes have to be perfect up-close", Leo explains. "This is why we pay attention to every detail. When I started out, I would draw with toothpicks, because I didn't know better! It makes me laugh now! I didn't know anything back then!" In fact the movement has grown so much that entire communities are now mobilized for the preparation of the costumes. Suburban economies are diverted from their original purposes. "Each dress costs around 500 US dollars to make. You have to have the shoes, the gloves, the stocking, the masks, the umbrellas, and other accessories made from scratch"; explains Tia Regina who every year turns her paper store into a "Bate Bola" temple. For most people around here it's about two to three months' salary. Most of them try and sell their old dress to help afford a new one.". Tia Regina's shop has a stash of old relics for sale. "One year I even sold a costume to a woman from Alaska!", she boasts. "It seems difficult to understand exactly why these big boys spend so much energy and money into putting on a pink dress for carnival" questions Faustini, who directed the only documentary on the subject. "I mean, these guys sometimes rob these heavy steel sewers caps to pay for their dress!"; Yet the hard work and effort involved seems to be exactly the point. "It's a great accomplishment for most of these favela-born lads, explains Faustini. They get the opportunity once a year to shine! They work hard to achieve this!" Year after year, the phenomenon seems to grow exponentially. Maria from the Indio Gang has been addicted ever since childhood. "We feel part of a team. One generation after another. We've seen boys growing into men, within our clan! Today they bring their sons in. My own son was only two months old when he got his first costume!” The sense of belonging seems to have such a great appeal, perhaps exactly because it is so much at fault within these communities. "Bate Bola was invented by the "favelados", explains Falstini. "These are members of the Brazilian society that are completely ignored and deprived of their very basic rights the rest of the year. It seems ironic that the very people that Brazil wants to ignore so badly are fuelling the renovation of the nation's pride and joy". When the tired samba schools seem to crumble under the weight of numerous critics, Bate Bola might guarantee a continuing interest in Carnival. Text © Julie Berranger Photographs © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares


 

Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195288

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195287

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195286

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195285

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195284

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195283

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195281

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195277

Tonzão, Funk dancer Funk from the famous boys band Os Havaianos is also a Bate Bola during Carnival, faithfull to the gang of the Abusados. He took off his mask and participate to the general rush for kisses and seduction, as the other clowns of his gang. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195275

Kids from the favela of City of God love to fantasy as Bate Bola clowns. Still too young to get out and circulate out of the favela, they show in their neighboorhood. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195271

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195269

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. Last lunch before entering the crowded bus they rented to cross and show themselves all suburbs and districts of Rio. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195255

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. Showing and parade ine the noble district of the Zona Sul of RIo - Copacabana is a revenge for this people of poor workers from the far suburbs. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195250

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. Showing and parade ine the noble district of the Zona Sul of RIo - Copacabana is a revenge for this people of poor workers from the far suburbs. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195238

Great competition for the best "Bate Bola" costume in the center of Rio de Janeiro. Some gangs carry their "hit-the-ball", when others prefered a soft toy or an umbrella as a sign of pacifism. The costume can coast until 600 USD$ to prepare, represnting more than the minimum salary in Brazil. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195237

Great competition for the best "Bate Bola" costume in the center of Rio de Janeiro. Some gangs carry their "hit-the-ball", when others prefered a soft toy or an umbrella as a sign of pacifism. The costume can coast until 600 USD$ to prepare, represnting more than the minimum salary in Brazil. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195231

Great competition for the best "Bate Bola" costume in the center of Rio de Janeiro. Some gangs carry their "hit-the-ball", when others prefered a soft toy or an umbrella as a sign of pacifism. The costume can coast until 600 USD$ to prepare, represnting more than the minimum salary in Brazil. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195228

A clown from the "Turma do Indio" is perfumed by his girlfriend.. Strawberry or Vanila, the perfumes are fully inegrated to the fantasy, part of the seduction effect. The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. This year, they have chosen Snoopy as their theme. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195226

Kids envy one of their neighboors, witch parents managed to pay him a Bate Bola fantasy - this mean spend more than a month salary for somthing that ill be only used the four days of Carnival. The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity, a many children are participating to the group. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195222

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. They all join for a ceremony before their invasion and parade in the other districts of Rio de Janeiro. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195216

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. They all join for a ceremony before their invasion and parade in the other districts of Rio de Janeiro. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195212

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. They all join for a ceremony with fireworks before their invasion and parade in the other districts of Rio de Janeiro. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195209

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. They all join for a ceremony with fireworks before their invasion and parade in the other districts of Rio de Janeiro. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195290

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195205

Léo Motta is one of the most wanted designer of the Bate Bola milieu. This year, he decided to limit himelf, creating only for his own group, the "Turma do Caos" © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195197

A sewer in Dona Janice's workshop in the traditional disctrict of Marechal Hermes. The last days before Carnival are the most intenses. She's now working at the making of 15 costumes for Léo's gang of "caos". © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195176

Kid dreaming of the marvels of Tia Regina's Bazar, in the district of Marechal Hermes, Zona Norte of Rio. After each carnival, the broken clowns that spent everything to pay themselves the fantasy of their gang, resell it cheap to Tia Regina. When Carnival approaches, who couldn't afford a new costume buys it second hand, to not miss completly the party. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195187

Kids are trying and playing the Bate Bola costumes of the former year, at Tia Regina's Bazar, in the district of Marechal Hermes, Zona Norte of Rio. After each carnival, the broken clowns that spent everything to pay themselves the fantasy of their gang, resell it cheap. When Carnival approaches, who couldn't afford a new costume buys it second hand, to not miss completly the party. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195280

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195279

Tonzão, Funk dancer Funk from the famous boys band Os Havaianos is also a Bate Bola during Carnival, faithfull to the gang of the Abusados. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195274

Bate Bola in Nilópolis (suburban city close to Rio), during the Carnival. Nilópolishosts also the champion Samba school "Beija-Flor". © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Nilopolis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 19/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195276

Kids from the favela of City of God love to fantasy as Bate Bola clowns. Still too young to get out and circulate out of the favela, they show in their neighboorhood. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195243

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. Showing and parade ine the noble district of the Zona Sul of RIo - Copacabana is a revenge for this people of poor workers from the far suburbs. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195282

Every sunday of Carnival, the Gang of the Abusados (Abused) goes out of their base in the favela of City of God and invade all suburb and districts of Rio de Janeiro, showing their magnificent fantasy. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 04/02/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195241

Great competition for the best "Bate Bola" costume in the center of Rio de Janeiro. Some gangs carry their "hit-the-ball", when others prefered a soft toy or an umbrella as a sign of pacifism. The costume can coast until 600 USD$ to prepare, represnting more than the minimum salary in Brazil. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195272

Group of friends dressed as women in Nilópolis (suburb city close to Rio de Janeiro), during the carnival © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Nilopolis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 19/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195234

Great competition for the best "Bate Bola" costume in the center of Rio de Janeiro. Some gangs carry their "hit-the-ball", when others prefered a soft toy or an umbrella as a sign of pacifism. The costume can coast until 600 USD$ to prepare, represnting more than the minimum salary in Brazil. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195260

A Bate Bola clown get asleep in Copacana, after 48 hours of parade with his gang in the streets of Rio. The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195227

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195225

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. Many kids are part of the group. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 18/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195248

The gang of the Indian (Turma do Indio) is based in the district of Guadalupe, suburb of Rio de Janeiro. Pacific oriented, they use a totem and a soft toy instead of the ball - as a sign of non agressivity. Showing and parade ine the noble district of the Zona Sul of RIo - Copacabana is a revenge for this people of poor workers from the far suburbs. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 20/02/2007

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195149

Dona Janice, owns her own sewer workshop in the traditional disctrict of Marechal Hermes. The last days before Carnival are the most intenses. She's now working at the making of 15 costumes for Léo's gang of "caos". © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195202

Léo Motta is one of the most wanted designer of the Bate Bola milieu. This year, he decided to limit himelf, creating only for his own group, the "Turma do Caos" With his friend Léandro, he's looking through all boutiques of the Madureira district seeking for the best fabrics, for the sewing of the fantasy of his gang. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195141

Shoemakers workshop in the traditional disctrict of Marechal Hermes. The last days before Carnival are the most intenses. They are now working at the making of 15 pair of shoes for Léo's gang of "caos". © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195168

Last days before Carnival, the boutiques from Madureira district are selling all accessories and costumes for thoses than did't manage to create their own fantasy. The poorest will wear second hand costumes from the former carnival. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195181

Tia Regina reigns in her Bazar, in the district of Marechal Hermes, Zona Norte of Rio. After each carnival, the broken clowns that spent everything to pay themselves the fantasy of their gang, resell it cheap to Tia Regina. When Carnival approaches, who couldn't afford a new costume buys it second hand, to not miss completly the party. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195192

Last days before Carnival, the boutiques from Madureira district are selling all accessories and costumes for thoses than did't manage to create their own fantasy. The poorest will wear second hand costumes from the former carnival. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195157

Júlio is the taylor of the famous gang of clowns "Agunia", recognizable with the blue ton and the eagle symbol. Júlio is preparing to enjoy his 25th carnival as a Bate Bola... © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195153

On a wall of the district of Madureira, a drawing tells the many victories of the Bate Bola gang Agunia ("agony"), over the defeated oponents. .© Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195161

In Madureira district, the headquarter of the feard and respected gang of clowns "Agunia" (agony). Each star around the eagle stand for a deceased member of the gang. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank ROV0195173

When Carnival approaches, who couldn't afford a new costume buys it second hand, to not miss completly the party. Shops in Madureira district are especialized in carnival accessories. © Vincent Rosenblatt / Agencia Olhares / Picturetank

Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 10/01/2008

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