Tension in the Union of Art and Sport Competition for Ownership of the Baseball Statuary and its Influence upon Design Christopher Stride and Ffion Thomas “Public monuments do not arise as if by natural law to celebrate the deserving, they are built by people with sufficient power to marshal (or impose) public consent for their erection.” Kirk Savage, author “The purpose is not to make art; it’s to show real people as they really were.” Henry Thomas, statue subject’s relative “This is not just about sports; it’s about art.” Omri Amrany, sculptor Introduction For professional sports organizations in North America, Europe and Austra- lia, player recruitment is no longer limited to sportsmen and women. Since the early 1990s, stadium precincts and downtown plazas have been adorned with figurative sculptures of athletes, cast in heroic action or imperial emi- nence. The USA’s national pastime of baseball has embraced this fashion enthusiastically. By 1 January 2016, 218 figurative statues of specific baseball players, managers, executives, broadcasters and even fans were in situ across North America. Such ubiquity reflects how sport sculpture now forms one of the most visible interactions between the cultural communities and businesses of art and sport. In this
NINE: A Journal of Baseball History and Culture – University of Nebraska Press
Published: Dec 19, 2017
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