ULTRA Football and politics in the mediterranean


ULTRA Football and politics in the mediterranean

A selection of Ultras Youth with @sebastienlouiswriter is now on show at Museum of Mediterranean and Near Eastern Antiquities of Stockholm @medelhavsmuseet in a brilliantly curated exhibition on #football and #politics, among brilliant installations by researchers and image makers.

Starting from the collection We need no education (North Africa and Asia), the installation tells about strategies and ploys of ultras groupes to stay afloat in their societies: I can’t breathe, I do want to breathe, I try to breathe, how do I breathe? Ultras groups as a destituent power?

It is clear enough that ultras are not a classic political subject, no category seems to be appropriate to define their way to stay afloat in their societies. They are not feminist, not right wing, not left wing, not extra parliament, they are not anarchist, they are not libertarian, they are not progressive, but certainly one cannot say they are reactionary. They are just ultras. And no one can deny their ability to get into the public scene.

The installation is based on light boxes and framed pictures, with videos and original objects.

Photo Exhibition
Title: ULTRA Football and politics in the mediterranean
Date: 12-12-2021 – 03-01-2023
Venue: Museum of Mediterranean and Near Eastern Antiquities Fredsgatan 2, Stockholm

It’s sometimes said that football and politics don’t mix. But the truth is often rather different, not least on the terraces.

During the Arab Spring of 2010 – 2012, fan groups played a central role in a number of the popular uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East. Flags bearing the colours of various clubs were on display in protest marches, and the chants of the terraces made their way to public squares. Energies that were normally devoted to supporting a particular team were used to depose governments. And the thing all of these groups had in common was that they referred to themselves as ‘Ultras’. 

Who were these groups? What is the link between politics and fanatical devotion to a club? 

In this exhibition, film-makers, researchers, photographers and journalists offer their own perspective on these questions. Using a variety of documentation from different countries around the Mediterranean, we examine fandom as a cultural phenomenon. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.