The Art Complex Museum
The Old Ball Game
In this exhibition,baseball, one of America's favorite pastimes, holds center stage. There is much excitement about this show which includes photographs, lithographs, sculpture and archival photographs and memorabilia on loan from the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum at Cooperstown. (left: Mary Stuart Lang, Opening Day, 1999, black and white photo)
The artists chosen to exhibit their work focus on the humanity of the game. Their work shows the accessibility of the game to all no matter what age, gender or location.
Henry Horenstein has photographed almost every kind of person playing ball including senior citizens, prisoners, children, women and professional players, In Chapitas, Venezuelan children play ball with bottle caps and a broom handle. Laura Wulf followed the Colorado Silver Bullets as they barnstormed the country playing against men's all-star amateur and semi-pro teams. Her work demonstrates the determination and strength of the women ball players. (left: Laura Wulf, Outfielder Tammy Holmes at Bat, 1997)
Artist/inventor Craig Bloodgood has created a baseball "pinball" game out of found objects which allows visitors to play ball.
Objects on loan from the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum at Cooperstown include a baseball from the Boston and Detroit 1909 game, a scorecard from the 1918 World Series and photographs including the Boston Stadium, 1903 and Babe Ruth..
A companion exhibition, "Rotations: Complex Sports" complements "The Old Ball Game" with images of six different sports from the museum's collection. All of the artwork was created by United States artists and ranges from about 1850 to 1990. (left: Ann Lynn Powers, The Bicyclists, 1997, lithograph, ACM 50.30; right: Thomas Hart Benton,The Little Fisherman, 1967, lithograph, ACM 50.30)
The sports represented are polo, sailing, fishing, bicycling, skating and boxing. The contemplative nature of fishing is captured by Winslow Homer in Waiting for a Bite and Thomas Hart Benton's The Little Fisherman. George Bellows ' A Stag at Sharkey's is one of the most important prints of the first half of the twentieth century. It captures the brute strength of boxers and the lust of the spectators. (left: Winslow Homer, Gloucester Harbor, 1873, wood engraving, ACM 80.236)
Read more about the Art Complex Museum in Resource Library Magazine
Please click on thumbnail images bordered by a red line to see enlargements.
For further biographical information on selected artists cited above please see America's Distinguished Artists, a national registry of historic artists.
This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 2/28/11
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