The football community in the United States, young and passionate, has an uphill climb to understand how football functions in other societies. The spectacle-based perspective limits the game to a pass, a goal, or a referee decision, which simplifies the emotion we feel towards the game. Our own separate memories and connection to the game are what drives this exhibition. We as artists question the importance and relevance the game has on us, and how we came to understand the true nature of how we view football. Growing up in a culture in which football is embedded doesn’t allow us to even question its importance. You accept it from an early age and by the time you mature, the game has already become too important to disregard. This is the place we find ourselves in, where our emotions are tied to a football team, just as one can be tied to a nation, a political party or a race. Here is where one begins to question its own connection to the sport and how it fulfills an aspect of our identity. When one sees football in this light, we can comprehend how it has something to offer everyone.

By visually representing ideas of memory and play, we will be exploring the relationship between football and spectators, and how we can rethink the relationship humans have to the sport. The artists compliment each other to show the reality and triviality of the game.

Adrian Mangel’s work is based on memory and skill. By tying the sport directly to the action of creating the work, his pieces will rethink the identities and abilities of individual athletes, thus showing a more total and universal appreciation of the performance. The drawings will not try to be realistic at all, shifting our notion of sports imagery and questioning high definition, hence presenting football in its raw nature: pure emotion. The strokes, colors and quality of the works on paper will be used to call into question the viewer’s memory of specific moments, shedding light on ideas of collective recollection.

“The Ball is Round,” also the title of Kerim Zapsu’s sculpture, is way of putting football into perspective. The sculpture influenced by a foosball table brings together different elements of society to compare relevance and importance. The title of the piece comes from a Turkish proverb meaning that anything can happen on the pitch, viewed together with the symbols on the sculpture he alludes to the notion of play and chance in other realms of life. The objects on the sculpture signify current events, religion, nationalism as well as art and the notion of the visceral. The juxtaposing of the symbols and the comical movement of the sculpture are Zapsu’s ways of playing a game with the meaning of football.

Oct 15 – Oct 21, 2015

Sleep Center | 9 Monroe Street, New York, 10002

12am – 6pm | Wednesday – Sunday

Oct 15, 7-10 pm