Today I visited Ben Brown Fine Arts for the opening of The Beautiful Game by Hank Willis Thomas. With quilted tapestries made from Euroleague soccer jerseys and sports equipment along with sculpture demonstrating the fine art of athletic movement, Hank combines the use of branding in the team uniforms with African traditions of quilting presenting different forms and figures relating to works by Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse throughout the works, creating a brand new reality.
I get a very child like feeling when I view these pieces as if they represent an adolescents love for their favorite sports team and the ability to decorate their room to show their loyalty. With the sports sculpture reminiscent of Constantin Brancusi’s “Endless Column”, I feel that the repetitiveness of each instrument of sport (soccer ball, football, etc.) exacerbates our endless global infatuation for sport. Hank also has a version of these sculptures in Regents Park in Central London for the Frieze Art fair Sculpture Park which allows the sculpture to interact with the outdoor space and it visitors. A definite must see.
Ben Brown Fine Arts is located at 12 Brook’s Mews, Mayfair, London W1K 4DG. Gallery hours are Monday – Friday 11:00am-6:00pm, Saturday 10:30a – 2:30p . Admission is FREE.