They say never meet your heroes. And it’s often good advice. Especially in sports where exalted youth grow up in a bubble to often become stunted adults peddling conspiracy theories and racist, sexist, and anti-queer sentiments. Sadly we’ve seen this in snowboarding time and time again.
Turning a literal lens away from these destructive and disappointing individuals to focus instead on a group of perpetually overlooked yet heavily influential riders is Heroes, a new hardcover book by veteran French photographer and filmmaker Jérôme Tanon celebrating the most dedicated female snowboarders round the world.
Shot entirely on medium format film over the course of two years, the 288 page photo book artfully documents a segment of snowboarding that continues to evolve and inspire, yet rarely find the spotlight. In addition to countless film photos and over two dozen lith prints, made by hand in Tanon’s own darkroom, the book includes words and works of art by the subjects themselves.
A preface by writer, photographer, and all around rising star Mary Walsh further expands the narrative well beyond the scope of just one man.
Of the many women featured, standouts include Robin Van Gyn, Desiree Melancon, Hana Beaman, Marie-France Roy, Anna Gasser, and countless others. Celebrating these hardworking, progressive snowboarders is essential to the growth of the culture, and in the case of Heroes, downright inspiring.
Each coffee table book is hand signed by Tanon himself and is now available worldwide for 45€ (roughly $55 USD). Corresponding art shows will tour to showcase the incrdible photography, once such events are safe again.