09
Sep
09

Exhibition: ‘Ball Parks: Jim Dow’s Photographs of Baseball Stadiums’ at The National Gallery of Canada

Exhibition dates: 4th July – 27th September 2009

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Apologies that the blog is not wide enough to display these panoramic images at a decent size but I thought they were interesting enough to display each 8″ x 10″ negative sequentially.

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Jim Dow. 'Exhibition Stadium' 1982

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Jim Dow
‘Exhibition Stadium’
1982

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Jim Dow. 'Exhibition Stadium' 1982

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Jim Dow. 'Exhibition Stadium' 1982

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Jim Dow. 'Exhibition Stadium' 1982

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“This installation from the National Gallery’s Collection of Photographs comprises 26 colour panoramic views of empty baseball stadiums across North America, from Exhibition Stadium, the home of the Toronto Blue Jays, and Montréal’s Olympic Stadium to the Houston Astro’s Astrodome. Taken in 1982, Jim Dow, a respected American photographer as well as a sports enthusiast, imparts through these images both a passion for the monumentality of the architecture and its abstract geometry and his love of baseball. The emptiness of the stadiums simultaneously evokes memory and a sense of anticipation.

Jim Dow’s interest in those places where people enact their everyday rituals, from the barbershop to the baseball park, has guided the path of his photographic career. Dow is concerned with capturing “human ingenuity and spirit” in endangered regional traditions – a barbershop with a heavy patina of town life covering the walls, the opulent time capsule of an old private New York club, the densely packed display of smoking pipes in an English tobacconist shop – all artifacts of a vanishing era.

Dow earned a B.F.A. and a M.F.A. in graphic design and photography from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1965 and 1968 respectively. An early influence was Walker Evans’s seminal book ‘American Photographs’ (1938). Dow recalls the appeal of Evans’s “razor sharp, infinitely detailed, small images of town architecture and people. What stood out was a palpable feeling of loss … pictures that seemingly read like paragraphs, even chapters in one long, complex, rich narrative.” Soon after graduate school Dow had the opportunity to work with Evans. He was hired to print his mentor’s photographs for a 1972 Museum of Modern Art retrospective.

Dow has taught photography at Harvard, Tufts University and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and his work has been widely exhibited. Among his series is “Corner Shops of Britain” (1995), which features facades of small family-run businesses: vitrine-like shop windows showcase goods from candy jars to jellied eels. Another series, “Time Passing” (1984-2004), captures North Dakota “folk art” such as rural road signage, handpainted billboards, and ornate gravestones.

Dow first gained attention for his panoramic triptychs of baseball stadiums, a project that began with an image he made of Veteran’s Stadium in Philadelphia in 1980. Using an 8″ x 10″ camera, he has documented more than two hundred major and minor league parks in the United States and Canada.”

Text from Artdaily.org website

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Jim Dow. 'The Kingdome. 'Seattle Mariners' 1982

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Jim Dow
‘The Kingdome. ‘Seattle Mariners’
1982

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Jim Dow. 'The Kingdome. 'Seattle Mariners' 1982

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Jim Dow. 'The Kingdome. 'Seattle Mariners' 1982

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Jim Dow. 'The Kingdome. 'Seattle Mariners' 1982

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Montreal,-1982-sm

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Jim Dow
‘Olympic Stadium, Montreal’
1982

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Jim Dow. 'Olympic Stadium, Montreal' 1982

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Jim Dow. 'Olympic Stadium, Montreal' 1982

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Jim Dow. 'Olympic Stadium, Montreal' 1982

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National Gallery of Canada
380 Sussex Drive
P.O. Box 427, Station A
Ottawa, Ontario
Canada 
K1N 9N4

Opening hours:
Daily 10 am – 5 pm
Thursday 10 am – 8 pm

1 October – 30 April
Monday closed
Tuesday – Sunday 10 am – 5pm
Thursday 10 am – 8 pm

National Gallery of Canada website

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4 Responses to “Exhibition: ‘Ball Parks: Jim Dow’s Photographs of Baseball Stadiums’ at The National Gallery of Canada”


  1. 1 Geneviève
    March 28, 2010 at 1:07 am

    How can i get a picture or a book from the ball park exhibition?

    • 2 bunyanth
      March 28, 2010 at 4:06 am

      Hi Genevieve
      Thankx for the message 🙂
      I have looked for a book on Amazon but no luck
      I suggest that you try and contact him at a university he teaches at:

      Currently Dow teaches fine art photography, photography and contemporary art history at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Tufts University, and Harvard University

      Good luck

      Marcus

  2. 3 uselesslines
    September 29, 2009 at 6:49 am

    Oh these are stunning!

  3. 4 Mark L
    September 24, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    These are great images. I have 14 pieces from this series and enjoy exhibiting them locally in Houston, Texas. I am interested in parting with some of these if any of your readers are interested in purchasing.


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Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes the Art Blart blog which reviews exhibitions in Melbourne, Australia and posts exhibitions from around the world. He has a Dr of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne and is currently studying a Master of Art Curatorship at The University of Melbourne.

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