The California Center for Digital Arts Presents ELITE ATHLETICISM: BEAUTY, BRAWN, AND SOLITUDE, Now thru 7/28
The California Center of Digital Arts, 590 W. Central Ave. Suite A, announces the opening of a new fine art photography exhibit, "Elite Athleticism: Beauty, Brawn, and Solitude," today, July 11 - July 18, 2014, a thematic exhibition from photographer John Bosma. The Center will host an "Open to the Public" wine and cheese Artists Reception tonight, July 11 from 6-9 p.m. with an artist talk at 7 p.m.
"Elite Athleticism: Beauty, Brawn, and Solitude" is an exhibit of elite athletes who hail from the CrossFit Community and the 37 images oscillate between notions of fixed and fractured identity. On the one hand, they present us with constructed identities as each of these athletes performs competitively, and at the same time, this contemporary work retains a faithful capture of the athlete's subjective experience.
Captured at various CrossFit workout facilities, in the heat of competition, or when practicing their moves, Bosma presents us with a series of faces and forms that radiate the joy and pain of CrossFit competition, which is a strength and conditioning program for elite and professional athletes worldwide.
While his work presents us with many of the usual fluid moves, Bosma's camera takes us deeper as he records the intense facial expressions that reveal joy and pain, success and failure, and then sometimes he pulls back to reveal sweat, angled bones, and oiled skin turning and twisting in a super human fashion.
From carefully orchestrated angles, we are treated to individual and very personal subtexts, because John's camera work employs all of the active photographic elements, such as point of view, and an arrangement of interpersonal essentials that nuance the subject. Although such artistry contributes to the value of the image, it is inseparable from the self-explanatory content, which is autonomous, and stands alone without need for extra information.
John Bosma is a professional photographer from Torrance, Calif. whose credits include events such as the Long Beach Toyota Grand Prix, but prefers to focus his creative energies on framing people and places within their personal and contextual patterns of light and shapes. In this thematic project, John explained that he wanted to explore and capture the truth of the CrossFit athlete's experience and let each image stand without further explanation.
When asked about the how and the why of his work, John says, "I am a CrossFit member as well as a photographer and it was interesting to step back and see this work within millimeters of the lens as opposed to my personal 20/20 field of vision. Consequently, I found it important to achieve two things at the same time. I needed to undermine the autonomy of the athletes in order to reconnect sport and life and at the same time, I had to grant the images a certain autonomy to portray the personal portraiture of each athlete so that viewer might grasp their experience."
Without reservation, Bosma's work reveals a relatively unknown society of fitness believers, but tells their story not with the typical sports documentation but with a vision beyond documentation. "Having always been active in competitive sports throughout my life," says John, "my passion in photographing sports lies in creating what I refer to as a 'portrait in action' - capturing the moment within the competitor when he/she is trying to achieve something greater than him/herself in competition."
Bosma points out that the challenge for the artist is to avoid the other football player catching a pass or a jock sitting in a sweaty locker room, but to capture the competitor's drive and commitment to excel in their personal performance. The 37 prints in the exhibit are a pictorial work out, bold, beautiful, harsh, and an opportunity for viewers to flex their visual muscles.
David LaNeve, General partner and manager of the California Center for Digital Arts, noted, "John's exhibit is emblematic of our fine art students who have advanced their careers as professionals with visual voices that matter. We are pleased to have the opportunity to present his work at the Center and we invite the public to explore this exciting work and to meet John Bosma at our reception."
More information: http://centerfordigitalarts.com/ .
Photo Credit: John Bosma