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man exercising with dumbbells

Dumbbells are something we often love and hate.Many of us have a set of sitting displays, perhaps in our bedroom, that are both a tool and a symbol of health or self-care.But we didn’t use it in a while and it just sat there, staring at us, judging.Sometimes it even makes us feel worse about ourselves as a reminder of our insecurities.
At the same time, it has a strange sexual energy.Think: Olivia Newton John’s “Physical” (and its Dua Lipa remix) or ’80s queer physique photography of men in crop tops, sport braces and shorts, a dumbbell bent by their sweaty arms on.The effects of this weighted metal bar on our own and others’ self-image are both powerful and complex.
“For me, dumbbells and other weights represent commitment and subconscious discipline,” says artist, photographer and model Diego Villarreal Vagujhelyi, who started the three exercises as a child with encouragement from his mother.”From the day you start using [weights], there’s an unspoken agreement, which is why I find them appealing.”
Currently debuting at SIZED:INDUSTRIALISM in New York’s West Village, Diego’s first foray into 3D art is a set of solid 304-grade stainless steel dumbbells that weigh 20 pounds each.Uniquely, however, the weight is sculpted to fit perfectly on a human hand, almost like a glove.The project is called “Vagujhelyi”, which is his mother’s surname and an ode to her support over the years.
“I wanted to create something that felt comfortable in the hand and was exciting to hold. The suit was ergonomically designed to accommodate the natural grip of the left and right hands. I also wanted to create a beautiful object that would fit into your personal space while evoking a sense of It’s a real feeling,” Diego said.Diego’s dumbbells are a little sexy.Unlike regular dumbbells, where your palm instantly shapes around the handle, and it slowly shapes your body, Diego’s shape surrounds you.It doesn’t feel like a pushy fitness trainer pushing you to the limit, but instead fosters a more caring and intimate relationship between the object and its holder.
To juxtapose the sculpture, Diego created a series of black-and-white photographs that embody the physique aesthetic of the ’80s.Shot on film to morph it in time, his vacant apartment in an outdated apartment complex in New York’s Financial District provided the perfect backdrop for the “nostalgic, residential feel” he wanted.Like those underwear commercials and fitness videos of that period, dumbbells are in the hands of naked athletes clasping their hips while on the phone or climbing a ladder.In some shots, they cover the genitals perfectly, others less so, and in some they lie on the bed, sinking into the mattress like two lovers.
In all photos, the dumbbell is the focal point, not only of the lens, but of the subject’s life, it feels like every dumbbell has a past, its handle is shaped by the ambitions and desires of the person who uses it.”I want the weights to look as if they’ve come to life, as if they’re familiar things that have always been there,” Diego said.
The unmistakable sensuality of the photography matches the sensuality of the dumbbells themselves, a favorite of Diego’s work by SIZED’s creative director, Alexander May.”I was initially drawn to Vagujhelyi dumbbells because of their compelling medium,” he told us.”[Dumbbells] are a staple for most people, especially during and after the pandemic. The way he obsessed over his objects with his choice of materials and finishes, I found them irresistible. More of our lives Multiobjects should be obsessed in this way.”
“It’s more about self-improvement and achieving personal goals,” explains the photographer.”No matter what body shape you want, I believe there is room for everyone to improve. At the same time, the physical and mental transformation is also a very exciting feeling.” said Diego, who is already working to create more More “promoting purposeful practice in others, whether through fitness or other aspects of well-being, but always relevant to myself and my personal path.”

Post time: Jun-24-2022