Mariano Gobbi AKA Mamo Air, as he prefers to be called, was born and raised in a small village named Serravalle Scrivia, in Piedmont, Italy.
Being bored with the quiet village life in his childhood, he began to search for leisurely activities that could entertain him, which led him to his passion for creative arts and extreme sports, starting with skiing at a young age.
"As I was so young when I started, I don’t even remember the day I put skiis on for the first time. Every once in a while, my father reminds me that I was so little, he would make 2 holes on the bottom of his backpack, so that when I was tired of skiing, he could put me in the bag on his shoulders and carry me for the rest of the day".
During elementary school he took part in the youth games, specialising mainly in the long jump, from which he’d usually gain a place on the podium. Alongside this, he also played basketball for a number of different teams over a period of eight years.
As a child, Mamo shared his love of sports with an innate artistic passion to draw and paint, and spent a lot of his time copying the masterpieces of famous artists, including comic book illustrators. It was not long before his love of the visual arts developed and expanded into a passion for performing arts when he began taking piano lessons at the age of 10.
Like his art, Mamo’s love of athletic sports also evolved into a passion for extreme sports when he had taken up motocross as a new hobby.
"At the end of the 80’s, my family and I used to visit my parent’s friends at the farm that they own in the country. I remember being instantly fascinated when I saw that their sons owned one of those little motocross bikes that they would ride off road with, like crazy. And that was it; once again, I had fallen in love with a new passion. My parents bought me that very bike when I was 11 years old."
"In the beginning of the '90s the hip-hop culture hit Italy, and this new trend substantially influenced my life in many different artistic aspects. Visually, my dress sense changed to a hip hop based style and my drawing/ painting style turned from one where I used pencils and paintbrushes to one favoured by spray cans and graffiti. In terms of performing arts, my classical training turned into a love of hip hop music. Thanks to hip hop, I had evolved from a practitioner to a creator of arts, as it was then that I actually started to write rap lyrics and produce my own music. More particularly however, a new world of movement had opened my eyes: breakdancing”.
As a teenager, his interests in extreme sports also progressed into a love of skydiving and snowboarding, which he still currently practices. "One day while watching TV, I accidentally came across a documentary about Patrick De Gayardon, one of the pioneers of extreme skydiving. I was immediately dazzled by the feeling of freedom that this sport transmitted to me. I recorded the documentary and started to watch it at least once a day, for several months. As a result, the idea of trying the sport grew inside of me more and more, until one day when I was 18 years old. I was looking for a driving school and entered an office where I saw a skydiving picture on the wall. That was the driving school that I ended up choosing, and incidentally my driving instructor was also the man that encouraged me to jump out of an airplane for the first time".
Mamo’s curiosity in the arts (and the advance in technology over time) led him to expand his horizons in the field once again, and as a result, he began to develop an interest in digital graphic design and video editing. After working as a graphic designer for a short period of time, he decided to attend a professional course of advertising and graphic design in Milan, from which he graduated after three years, specialising in art direction. After three years, he graduates and specialises in Art Direction. This graphic experience together with his development in the painting technique of airbrushing influenced his artistic style even more. Also during this course, Mamo collaborated with one of his classmates to create his first clothing label.
At the same time his growing passion for performing arts, mostly singing, acting and presenting, led him to participate in stage roles for a theatre company, as well as work as an extra and walk-on for a variety of shows and commercials on Italian television stations. Thanks to one of these jobs, he was offered a full time position as a production assistant for MTV Italy, and this became the start of his professional career.
At the age of 23, "…feeling like the fella in the movie Big Fish", he moved to London, and, after spending 2 years studying the English language, he started work as a promo producer for a variety of television channels. After filming a promo during work, in which parkour played a substantial role, Mamo was instantly inspired by the distinct technique and style involved in the discipline, and started training alongside gymnastics and climbing.
In 2011, he co-founded the Broken Men free-running team, and it was at this point he realised that all the disciplines and sports he loved and practiced over the years, could be expressed and gathered under one figure: the stunt man.
Thanks to his connections in the film industry, he has the chance to coordinate and perform in film / video productions.
In 2013 he founded his personal clothing label Wefew, with the aim to help developing parkour clothing.
Find Mamo Air on his facebook page by clicking here.