On Court With Jonas Wood

 
 

FOUR TENNIS COURTS, 2021

Installation at Wood Kusaka Studios. Artwork © Jonas Wood. Photo: Marten Elder. Courtesy Wood Kusaka Studios and Gagosian

 

Opening June 2nd at Gagosian New York is JONAS WOOD / Four Tennis Courts, four new works in the continuation of this artist’s series. In the oil and acrylic canvases on view, Wood has reworked four of his favorite drawings from a suite of twenty-four produced between 2016 and 2018, all of which depict famous international tennis tournaments.

Wood first made use of sports imagery in dynamic post-Pop portraits derived from boxing, baseball, and basketball cards. He later became interested in depicting the physical spaces associated with sports. While watching games on television, Wood developed a shorthand approach to representing courts and fields, paring complex scenes down to geometric shapes and flat, saturated colors. Each court is rendered in large scale portrait format, preserving its key characteristics, while simplifying or eliminating the players and spectators.

The courts of Abu Dhabi, London, Melbourne, and Paris this new series are all distinguished by their iconic colors and identifying signage. Wimbledon with Bball Orchid (2021) and French Open with Orchid (2021) incorporate snippets of paintings of plants and basketballs, hinting at the studio space beyond the screen. Australian Open with Red Lines (2021) and Abu Dhabi (2021) feature strategically positioned abstract elements, with bars of red and black recalling postwar Color Field painting. Read More

 

Against The Tides

 

BETH FRENCH

Against The Tides is the captivating story of British marathon swimmer and world record holder Beth French, and her quest to swim across the most dangerous open water crossings in the extreme challenge known as Oceans Seven. For marathon swimmers it is the ultimate test — the equivalent of climbing the Seven Summits in mountaineering — and very few people have ever completed it. Beth ups the ante with the goal to accomplish it in a single year which has never been done, even more unfathomable as she spent much of her youth in a wheelchair with a debilitating illness, unable to move.

The Oceans Seven consists of seven of the most unforgiving straits and channels around the world. There is The North Channel between Ireland and Scotland, 21 miles; The Cook Strait between New Zealand’s North and South Islands, 16 miles; The Molokai Channel between Molokai and Oahu, 27 miles; The English Channel between England and France, 21 miles; The Catalina Channel between Santa Catalina Island and Los Angeles, California, 21 miles; The Tsugaru Strait between the Japanese islands of Honshu and Hokkaido, 12 miles; and The Strait of Gibraltar between Spain and Morocco, 10 miles. Read More

 

Liquid Horizon

 

 

Born and raised in Kauai, surfer and photographer Daniel Fuller has spent his life in, on, and surrounded by water. He is regarded as one of surfing’s preeminent big wave riders. Fuller has become a lauded photographer as well. It is no surprise his images focus on the ocean, captured in an ethereal and mystical way. His intimate connection with the aquatic world brings a unique perspective to his photography, now published for the first time in Liquid Horizon: Meditations of the Surf and Sea. This retrospective showcases an opulent collection of abstract seascapes created from 2007-2020.

Fuller’s nocturnal images of waves and water are photographed evocatively by moonlight with slow exposures. While soulful, they exhibit a creative discipline, repeating and evolving a single idea over time. As art writer and gallerist Adam Lindemann describes in the preface, “The ocean and the shore are abstracted beyond recognition, to the point that what we see is just color; the composition is a transition from one to the other — dry land merges into the water and the image becomes a part of the liquid experience.”

Whether on a surfboard or with a camera, there are both similarities and differences in how Fuller captures a wave. We spoke to him about his process and vision, and the expression of his experience with the ocean into his art… Read More

 

Wave Prophecy Sorayama

 

 
Famed Japanese contemporary illustrator, Hajime Sorayama, has teamed up with Mizuno to transform its iconic WAVE PROPHECY sneaker into a work of art that is the WAVE PROPHECY SORAYAMA. Sorayama is best known for the erotic machinery of his Sexy Robot series and has added his signature highly stylized, slick and shiny layer to the futuristic evolution of this running shoe.

The most distinctive element of the WAVE PROPHECY SORAYAMA is the sole, already unique its design, which showcases the intersection of Mizuno’s technology with Sorayama’s creative vision. Sorayama wanted the sneaker to inspire “floating in the air” and the resulting design gives the impression it might actually lift off and fly.
 


 

This collaboration with Sorayama and Mizuno was not their first. The two teamed up previously on the design of prosthetic running blade called the KATANAΣ, also rendered in his shiny silver, and perhaps even more so embodying his Sexy Robots.

The WAVE PROPHECY SORAYAMA will be available for early release at 2G Tokyo and 2G Osaka on January 30, and at Dover Street Market Ginza and KITH Tokyo on February 6. The shoe is priced at ¥38,500 JPY (approximately $370 USD).

 

Daniel Arsham: Sport Relics

 

BRONZE ERODED BASKETBALL, 2019

Daniel Arsham’s newest “relic”, Bronze Eroded Basketball, was released last week in a limited edition of 99. Arsham is one of the most prominent and influential contemporary artists, with a cult-like following whose new work garners a buzz similar to a hot sneaker drop — and from a similar demographic. Like all of this artist’s work, this cast bronze sculpture of a regulation size basketball sold out within minutes of its release. Read More

 

Not Your Father’s Sports Mag

 

 

A new breed of sport magazine has hit the newsstands. These bespoke publications are not the product of a big media conglomerate, but published by and tailored to those passionate fans who want a different point of view than your typical sports magazine. With an artful approach, bold yet unconventional photography, and words spoken softly over the roar — each of these delivers those stories that often go untold with a journalistic and visual appeal that transcends the sport itself. Read More

 

Decks of Art

 
 
ROW 1: GEORGE CONDO, SHEPARD FAIREY, KEHINDE WILEY, KAWS X KROOKED, KEITH HARING, ANDY WARHOL; ROW 2: MARILYN MINTER, ANDY WARHOL, KENNY SCHARF, DAMIEN HIRST, DAMIEN HIRST, JEFF KOONS; ROW 3: NATE LOWMAN, ANDY WARHOL, KEITH HARING, JULES DE BALINCOURT, JOSE PARLA, GEORGE CONDO

 

Andy Warhol to Keith Haring, Jeff Koons to Damien Hirst, George Condo to Shepard Fairey – many of the most important contemporary artists have turned the skateboard deck into their sporty canvas. The parameters of its shape create a unique frame, contained within are works of art that often reference some of these artists most important pieces.

For many of contemporary artists whose work started on the street, and who are often skateboarders themselves, it’s a way to stay connected to their roots. For the blue chip artists at the top of the contemporary art world, says collector and art advisor Glori Cohen, “the skateboard provides a unique cool factor at a low price point — and it’s a really fun way to collect art!” Many of her clients buy these skateboard decks for their children’s rooms. Created in limited editions, it’s real art their kids can relate to, that’s still collectible too.

Read More

 

Surf Flick Classics!

 

FIVE SUMMER STORIES 1972

Summer has arrived and it’s time for another round-up of great sport flick classics. The beaches are beckoning and the Best of Surf is the theme of this collection. If you can’t make it to the shore, surf’s up at home. So queue up the DVDs and get ready to paddle out, drop in and ride those waves! As always, click the image for a preview trailer.

Let’s lead it off with “Five Summer Stories”, heralded as one of the finest surf movies ever made. This classic features all the great surfers from the 70’s like Gerry Lopez, Shaun Tomson, Jeff Hakman, and Margo Oberg. Filmed against the backdrop of the Vietnam War and the Nixon years, the movie portrays a young, outlaw sport at a strategic point in its creative evolution. Read More

 
 

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