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More interesting public art coming to Nationals Park

Aug 3, 2010, 1:03 PM EDT

Remember those statues of Frank Howard, Josh Gibson and Walter Johnson that were installed at Nationals Park last year?  The ones with the multiple limbs that were described as “having the unfortunate effect of making the players seem covered in tumorous growths.”  Yeah, there’s more of that sort of thing coming next season:

Thomas Sayre with Raleigh, N.C.-based Clearscapes, Inc. is designing 30 “stainless steel-domed forms which will accurately
follow the theoretical model of the trajectory of a curving fast-ball
pitch,” said Sarah Massey, spokeswoman for the D.C. Commission on the
Arts and Humanities. They will be suspended by early next year from the
eastern garage. [note: here's a concept photo]

In addition to that piece will be “four suspended mobiles with four dozen hand-painted baseball figures
rotating to a “freshly composed tune of ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame.’”

“Curving fast-ball pitch?” Moving right along . . .

My taste in art tends towards, I dunno, the less adventurous (my favorite artists is Edward Hopper), so I’m probably not the right person to judge.  I’d note, however, that most of the folks who go to ballgames don’t tend to go for stuff that, like someone quoted in this article says about the Nats’ new art “might not be a concept that the mind can wrap itself around now.”

Art shouldn’t always be easy to take. Indeed, there are good arguments that it should never be.  I just hope that those responsible for some of these kinds of things are cool with a lot of confused people who would rather find their way to the beer counter than ponder stainless steel-domed forms which
follow the theoretical model of the trajectory of a “curving fast-ball pitch.”  

  1. Kevin R - Aug 3, 2010 at 1:25 PM

    In addition to that piece will be “four suspended mobiles with four dozen hand-painted baseball figures rotating to a “freshly composed tune of ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame.’”
    There’s already one of those, it’s in the concourse right behind the section where my season tickets are. It’s a little odd, but I’ve gotten used to it. Not sure it needs to have multiple copies, though.

  2. Quixote's Whore - Aug 3, 2010 at 2:05 PM

    I like the idea. Will the suspended balls have advertising? The concept graphics make me think those balls are ripe for selling things.

  3. Ditto65 - Aug 3, 2010 at 2:15 PM

    I, too, like Hopper’s work. But I Have to make sure that my scotch intake is low in the days leading up to viewing Hopper so I don’t get too depressed by the isolation and loneliness evident in his art.

  4. Old Gator - Aug 3, 2010 at 4:49 PM

    Are they going to have any pieces by Andres Serrano? I think a very large scale version of his most popular work would look great just behind home plate – the Gnats’ answer to Scrooge McLoria’s idiotic giant aquarium, you know?

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