Sport in Art at Mocak, museum of contemporary art in Krakow, honours sport in it’s ability to therapise, amuse and empower those that choose to participate in it. The exhibition examines diverse themes shown in a variety of mediums; photography, sculpture, video installation, and classical painting.
“Sport performs a terrific therapeutic role, relieving us of layers of animal aggression. Mankind has hit on a great idea: how to fight and triumph, without causing any real harm.” – MOCAK
Artist, Slowomir Rumiak believes that we need sport to expel ‘bad energy’:
“For me it is plain and obvious that this is precisely what we do in art and in sport. I have always been convinced that, had I not got involved with art I would have been a very dangerous ma.n”
Rumiak’s black and white video installation Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen stages a violent American football game. The film shows a close-up of an exaggerated moment of aggression which is punctuated by explicit language. Rumiak’s work sees sport as a brutal experience that must be diffused before we can return to society.
Kamil Kuskowski sees sport as a battleground. His minimalist photographs show close-ups of a football pitch overlayed with text. He writes the location, fixture, time and score of a particular game. Each photograph describes a match as a significant historical moment.
Whilst the exhibition asks us to take sport seriously, we are also faced with the absurdity of the behaviour of sportsmen. Ingebourg Luscher admits that she wasn’t interested in football but when she heard a game by accident, she was drawn to the exaggerated gestures of the players. Her video installation, Fusion stages a match in which footballers wear suits. She aims to show that men’s everyday lives are at odds with the absurdity of their celebrations during a game.
The diverse themes that are presented at this exhibition perfectly describes our continuing fascination with sport. The artworks themselves are interactive without physically engaging us, showing that we can all connect with sport in some way. The exhibition sacrifices the glamour and excitement of the television spectacle in favour of how sport can teach us to better understand ourselves.
The exhibition will be open until the 19th of September 2012.