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“5 On 5 Basketball Art” Comes To Brooklyn (Pics)

Late last month, after hooping in Manhattan, we took the A train to Brooklyn to check out the “5 on 5 Art Show” specifically tailored to the game of basketball. All the hoops art was nestled in The Kymberle Project along Atlantic Ave., just a hop skip and a jump from Barclays Center, but miles from the typical perspective of most basketball fans. The 10 artists featured were selected as a pick-up group with five to a side, and two captains who were the brains behind the exhibit. Come check out the eclectic mix of basketball art you’re gonna geek out about just like we did.

The 5-on-5 basketball art show was the brainchild of TTK (Mike Harris), and his design professor, Eli Neugeboren, both of whom selected a team of five talented individuals — emphasis on the individual part — who would create their own pieces of original basketball art for the show.

The show was about as diverse as it gets, with an emphasis on the championship-winning Knicks squads from 1970 and 1973 as well as the more modern players on those tough 1990s teams (i.e. Patrick Ewing, John Starks, Anthony Mason et al.). That wasn’t all, though. Sneakers, old school players and teams, Michael Jordan, a player who looked a lot like Kyrie Irving and other more experimental forms and subjects were broached.

The only thing that tied so many different pieces and ideas together was basketball, sort of like five different personalities — each with their own distinctive strengths, peccadillos and eccentricities — meshing on the court to create something more beautiful and transcendent then they can ever offer on their own (take note Cavs players).

The entire affair was a kaleidoscope of acrylics, inks, charcoals, canvas, tapestries, basketball and the minutiae of the game gleaned and rendered in whatever form they chose by the artist. If you’re a basketball junkie like we are, it’s heaven on an easel — or in this case, hanging on the wall.

“Eli, me and him would always talk about basketball in class,” TTK told us about the origin of the show on opening night. “[We’d] just talk about 90s basketball, talk about the Knicks, the Nets, Miami and all the other stuff.”

TTK was clad in a tie and jeans, but the crowd was about as Brooklyn as it gets with a decided sartorial slant towards retro kicks, torn jeans and vintage tee’s that made us embarrassed to show up in sweats from our run in the City.

Thankfully for us, TTK overlooked our sweat-encrusted threads and heavy gym bag to explicate how this whole affair happened.

“Me and [Eli] built a relationship, and after the semester was over…he told me, ‘Hey, I’ve been a part of a basketball-themed show out of state with a bunch of dope artists. I wanna try and bring it to New York. I know you got connections…and you’ve done a bunch of different art shows in the past, so what can you do to make it happen for me?'”

“Eli did one in Boston and another one in Ohio,” TTK told us, and so the New York show was on.

Here’s Eli on the show:

“Mike was my student about a year ago and the subject of hoops tended to come up in class – we kept talking about it and how we both make art inspired by it. I told him I’d been in a few shows and was trying to pull something together here in Brooklyn and he immediately wanted in. I figured there was no reason to limit it just to our work since the other shows had showcased a wide variety of artists, and the idea that we would co-curate seemed like a natural fit.

When we were each assembling our rosters we needed to make sure we had a cohesive unit, where the work would all work together, much like a team of individual players, but also that people would stand out for their individual abilities…

There’s also the fact that nearly everyone is doing NYC-centric work for this. There are so many legends of the game that are from NYC, and definitely not just the NBA. New York is a basketball town and also a town for artists. We’re bringing all that together.”

Once TTK’s interest was piqued, Eli turned to him to help set up the New York end. If you think of it as a basketball battle between cities, you’re not far off, where it’s TTK’s New York-based crew and Eli’s artists from out of state.

The pickup metaphor was part of their official release for the event, and if you don’t think the Bill Russell reference made us happy, then you haven’t been paying attention:

“Like Bill Russell and Lenny Wilkens before them, TTK and Neugeboren will be player-coaches and hang work along with their teams. The show will feature a diverse range of styles celebrating the game. Works will include paintings on canvas, cut-paper collages, digital works on paper, cut vinyl on panel, and more.The show includes a diverse lineup of artists from as close as the Borough of Brooklyn and as far away as the Pacific Northwest. All the artists share a love of the sport – watching it, playing it, and making art inspired by it.”

Eli told us in an email about earlier basketball-inspired shows which spawned the first — hopefully of many to follow — New York exhibition:

“The Boston show came after a show in Cleveland that were both initiated by the guys behind DoubleScribble, and this is only loosely associated because Mike McGrath founded that site and is in this show. He’s not involved with DS anymore and this was just me and TTK putting it together, trying to bring some amazing talent inspired by hoops out into the light.”

Since moving from Brooklyn a little over a year ago, TTK’s enthusiasm for the show and the art was a reminder that the borough is still a focal point for what’s most exciting about living in NYC today. Even if the Nets hadn’t moved across the Hudson and East River, we’re guessing Brooklyn would always be the place to house something like a basketball-inspired art show designed like a pickup game.

If you think it’s a little too fashionable for an OG hoops fans, the laid-back event coordinators and participants will dissuade you of that notion right away. This is for art fans and basketball fans alike. Here are the important details since you can still check it out for another couple of weeks:

WHERE
The Kymberle Project
1332 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11216
A/C Train to Nostrand

WHEN
October 23 – November 18, 2014

There’s also a closing party for the show this Friday for those who couldn’t make it to the opening with a performance by Gustav Gauntlett.

Click to see all of the incredible basketball art featured in the show…

**CLICK ON THE ARTIST’S NAME TO GO TO THEIR WEBPAGE AND FULL PORTFOLIO**

*A brief bio about each artist follows each of their works*

J.O. APPLEGATE (@bouncex3)

“Still Light Out”
16″ x 12″
Archival Digital Print
$150
(Click Pic For Larger Image)
“Nutmeg”
12″ x 16”
ink on bristol
$200
(Click Pic For Larger Image)
J.O. Applegate (Bounce Bounce Bounce) is an illustrator who lives outside Detroit.  He likes art almost as much as he likes basketball.

***

CHELSEY BOEHNKE (@cboehnke)

“Yung Phil”
Ink on Cotton Rag Paper
8”x10”
SOLD
“Yung Earl”
Ink on Cotton Rag Paper
8”x10”
SOLD
“Yung Walt”
Ink on Cotton Rag Paper
8”x10”
SOLD
“Yung Willis”
Ink on Cotton Rag Paper
8”x10”
SOLD
“Slicing & Dicing”
Ink on Cotton Rag Paper
8”x10”
$800
“Styling & Profiling”
Ink on Cotton Rag Paper
8”x10”
$800
Chelsey Boehnke is an Oregon based designer, illustrator and aspiring NBA halftime shootout contestant with an educational background in architecture and printmaking. She wore an oversized Arvydis Sabonis jersey for the majority of her childhood. In her spare time she enjoys windsurfing and working on an illustrated anthology of Horace Grant’s goggles throughout his career. She hopes to one-day get the completed copy signed by him or his identical twin brother, Harvey.

Click for more…

CLEOFUS (@cleofus)

(Click For Larger Image)
“Knicks vs. Bulls I”
Mixed Media
18”x14”
$300

Knicks vs. Bulls II
Mixed Media
18”x14”
$300

Cleofus: “Never was the athletic type but always admired the basketball players of the 90’s and all the fashions that came from the sport.”

AARON DANA (@aaronhdana)

(Click For Larger Image)
“Oakley”
Ink on Paper
12”x12”
SOLD

“LJ”
Pencil on Paper
12”x12”
$250

“Mason”
Ink on Paper
12”x12”
$150

“Van Gundy”
Pencil on Paper
12”x12”
SOLD

Aaron Dana is a freelance illustrator/graphic artist based out of Boston, MA specializing in portraiture, sports, and hand lettering. 

***

DANA GIVENS (@danagivens)

“Bobby McD x The Woodward Shop”
Acrylic on Canvas
3’x6’
Negotiable

(Click For Larger Image)
Dana Givens: “My dad got me into basketball at a very young age. He had all girls, no sons. I was the last born so I think he felt compelled to turn me into a miniature version of himself. Fortunately, I wanted to be just like him as well. He taught me everything about the sport and how to play. It’s been my favorite sport for all of these years and I still enjoy playing it to this day. Thank you Dad.”

***

XIA GORDON (@xia_pet)

Moonlit Skirmish
18″ x 20″
Ink & Watercolor on Paper
$300

(Click For Larger Image)
Xia Gordon: “As a black female artist, basketball’s importance is synonymous with my making art. Basketball is a way of liberating and serving as a barrier breaking form of expression for the black community by helping to celebrate integrity, culture and performance.”

Click for more…

KlashWon (@klashwon)

(Click For Larger Image)
“Halo #7″
24″x36”
Acrylic, Gold Leaf on Canvas?
$725

“All American”
30″x30″
Acrylic, Gold Leaf on Canvas
$1000

KlashWon: “As a fan of basketball I enjoy the artistry that it involves, the colors, the style, the movement. The excitement that evokes when watching a game keeps me coming back.”

***

MIKE MCGRATH (@michaelmcgrathjr)

(Click For Larger Image)
“1972-73 World Champions”
Digital Illustration
$120

“3 To Tha Dome”
Acrylic on Canvas (16×20)
$175

Mike McGrath, born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, is an artist, designer and illustrator with basketball infused in his DNA. Mike was shooting a basketball before he could walk, but as both of his parents were PGs, was criticized for not passing first. Art was just as much a passion from nearly as early an age and combining the 2 always made sense.

***

NATHAN MCKEE (@nathan_mckee)

(Click For Larger Image)
“Ewing”
Archival Paper & Glue
13”x16”
$350

“GOAT”
Archival Paper & Glue
16”x13”
$350

“Walt “Clyde” Frazier”
Archival Paper & Glue
16”x13”
$400

Nathan McKee is an artist and illustrator who lives and works in Portland, Oregon. McKee’s illustrations and paper cutouts utilize simple lines and flat color, and are inspired by comics, sports, music and other elements of popular culture.

Click for more…

***

ELI NEUGEBOREN (@enoogs)

(Click For Larger Image)
“Levels of the Game I: Metal & Chain”
Vinyl and Mixed Media on Panel
24”x30”
$550

“Levels of the Game II: Cotton & Wood”
Vinyl and Mixed Media on Panel
18”x24”
$450

“Levels of the Game III: Lights & Air”
Vinyl and Mixed Media on Panel
18”x24”
SOLD

Eli Neugeboren is a professor and artist who lives and works in Brooklyn. Some of his oldest memories are being carried into UMass basketball games by his dad back in the 70s. Basketball may not be jazz but you can definitely make art about it.

***

TTK (@gottkgo)

“6-0”
Mixed Media
30”x30”
$900/obo

(Click For Larger Image)
TTK: “As mush as I LOVE the game, know it’s history, and watch it, I don’t play it. I stopped playing basketball in my early teens. This was around the time when I realized that I was a better artist than athlete.”

***

MISHA TYUTYUNIK (@blubeard_misha_t)

“Air Hamlet/To Be 23”
Acrylic on Canvas
34”x60”
$4500

(Click For Larger Image)
“Classics”
Acrylic on Canvas
36”x48”
$2500

(Click For Larger Image)
Misha: “I was never a fan of basketball per say, but there was something about the game in the 90s that captivated me. Maybe it was the era or just the feeling that those years held, but it seemed as if sports in the 90s were just better; they were more dynamic, more interesting, more fantastic and more characterized than they are today. The 90s made me love basketball the spectacle (even if I wasn’t that much of a fan of the game) where Jordan and Pippin and Bird and Magic levitated and soared above the crowd, making ridiculous baskets, like some giant, glistening, gods that defied all laws of physics… That was basketball!!!”

**If no price is listed inquire with the artist or the curators.**

***For more info contact ArtByTTK@gmail.com OR eli@elineugeboren.com***

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