JEREMY JOHN KAPLAN: "Take Charge"
In THe GReaT GLaSS eLeVaToR
MICHAEL M KOEHLER: "The Glass House"
And a special project in the ReDRooM by
EDWIN BETHEA: "An All Red Room" An examination of fear and darkness.
Opening Reception 26 May 2018 6-9pm
Exhibition through 23 June 2018
Jeremy John Kaplan's first solo exhibition traverses the iconic language of basketball, surveying the intersection of art and sport. Using cyanotypes, assemblage, found photographs, and installation, Kaplan draws parallels between the practicing athlete and artist - their intuitive belief in capacity and ability to strive despite the impossibility of sustainable success. The hoop is a sanctuary, a place for personal retrospection, achievement and failure. The circle offers opportunity, a chance for fulfillment. The net objectifies the suspense of setting goals as well as the sweet sound of execution. It is a charged commodity, it is at times cherished in celebration while often impermanent, replaceable and disposable. A basketball net on its own serves no function, an ornament designed to hang at an unreachable height - a bottomless basket.
“I was born two weeks before the 1982 NBA season and was seven months old when Doctor J, Moses and the 76ers swept the finals against Kareem, Magic and the Lakers. The same year Don Feely, a basketball coach from Fairleigh Dickinson, New Jersey, meets a seven-foot, seven-inch Manute Bol, while teaching a clinic in Sudan. The cultural landscape was changing and new icons were appearing in the skyline. As a kid, like so many others inspired and in awe of the internationally expansive young game and it’s subsequent superstar highlight reels, I collected cards and coveted the sneakers and jerseys I wore to school every day.
In 1991 my father got us Sixers tickets and press badges that would give us access to wait outside the locker room and ask for autographs. As I waited, I saw a toweringly lean dark man in a suit and instantly assumed it was the tallest player in NBA history. Overwhelmed with excitement I introduced myself to him and said ‘great game’. He replied ‘you are looking for my brother’. We then saw Hersey Hawkins, Armen Gilliam and Charles Barkley. Finally, Manute Bol walked out and when I walked over and held out my program and marker, he replied “Sorry, my hands are full.” I quickly negotiated, offering to carry his bags to his car in exchange, he agreed and we walked through the players parking lot of the Spectrum with his brother. I was never so small watching our shadows walk away. I remember he had a Jeep Wrangler with the front seats taken out, and he drove off from the back seat. Our stories paralleled for a matter of minutes, his story remains unlike any other. Years later I find myself collecting artifacts of Manute Bol’s legacy in memoriam, looking to his image as the presence of higher power, remembering his shadow next to mine.”