sports

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Dance

A Mesmerizing Dance Performance for the Paralympics Hand Off Ceremony Choreographed by Sadeck Waff

October 19, 2021

Christopher Jobson

As part of a closing hand-off ceremony for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games and the 2024 games in Paris, choreographer Sadeck Waff worked with 128 performers in a dizzying performance focused on arms and hands. The French dancer and choreographer has become known for his limb-centric performances which you can watch more of on Instagram. Music by Woodkid. (via The Kid Should See This)

 

 

 



Amazing Dance

A Clip in Extreme Slow Motion Shows Every Detail of Simone Biles's Amazing Triple-Double

June 10, 2021

Grace Ebert

Simone Biles claimed her seventh U.S. gymnastics title last weekend, in part thanks to an impeccably executed triple-double (a.k.a. three twists performed during two backflips). A short clip captures the star athlete, who hasn’t lost an all-around competition in eight years, as she completes the perfect sequence in extreme slow motion—you might want to watch the full routine first for perspective—showing how she gently turns herself over in two backflips before launching herself multiple feet into the air. After a seemingly gravity-defying series of flips and bends, she nails the landing in an absolutely stunning feat. (via Kottke)

 

 



Photography

A Remarkable Split-Screen Montage for Nike Juxtaposes Athletes in Synchronized Movement

April 22, 2021

Grace Ebert

“When things aren’t fair, we’ll come together for change.” That’s the message behind an impeccably edited video montage by Wieden + Kennedy. Created for Nike’s You Can’t Stop Us campaign, the split-screen compilation flows through 72 clips of individual athletes and teams from 24 different sports who run, flip, and dive across the screen, shifting from the court and the beach to the mat and the street in seamless movement.

To create the dynamic mashup, Wieden + Kennedy parsed 4,000 sequences before deciding on the final 72 shots featuring 53 athletes—spot LeBron James, Naomi Osaka, Eliud Kipchoge, Caster Semenya, Cristiano Ronaldo, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Serena Williams, Colin Kaepernick, and Kylian Mbappe among them. Narrated by Megan Rapinoe, the compilation is an earnest and heartwarming look at how sports can bring people together to power real-world change.

You also might enjoy this incredibly long Olympic sequence by Donato Sansone.

 

 

 



Photography

Right Up Our Alley: Striking Drone Footage Flies Through Minneapolis's Bryant Lake Bowl

March 10, 2021

Grace Ebert

After splitting from the nighttime cityscape, a drone descends into Bryant Lake Bowl in a fast-paced clip that rolls through the classic Minneapolis venue. The camera-strapped device trails a ball as it barrels down the lane and then winds past the gutters and into the bar and theater, picking up competitive banter and diving in the otherwise-unseen abyss that is the ball pit. Taken by Jay Christensen of Rally Studios, the footage is evidence of both how far technology has advanced in recent years and the adept piloting skills required to capture such a striking ode to the beloved alley and the game itself. (via Kottke)

 

 

 



Art

A Pair of Vibrant, Color-Blocked Murals by Lakwena Transform Two Basketball Courts in Arkansas

December 16, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Justkids, shared with permission

Tucked into the verdant landscape of Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, are two dramatically altered basketball courts primed for play. Commissioned by the women-led curators of Justkids (previously) and OZ Art, the public project was conceived by London-based artist Lakwena, who transformed the outdoor spot into a lively area with her trademark typographic murals.

Basketball jargon covers the patterned court with an arched “Make it rain” demarcating the three-point lines. Creating under a larger theme of unity, Lakwena also referenced iconic poet Maya Angelou, who lived in the state throughout her life. “Bury me down / still I rise” lines the perimeter of the court, with Lakwena’s title of the work, “I’ll bring you flowers,” spelled out on multi-color petals at the center circle.

This community-centered project is the artist’s second in Arkansas and follows a 2017 work at Sebastian County’s Juvenile Detention Center in Fort Smith. Lakwena writes that “I’ll bring you flowers” is an extension of that piece as it looks “at growth and blessing in spite of adversity.” She expands on the idea:

I was really excited to work in a place with a largely Black demographic. It was nice to make an artwork for people that I have a connection to in that respect, especially at what feels like a very significant time for the Black community. The piece is called “I’ll bring you flowers.” Flowers are often used as a way of greeting, paying respect and honor people, and I wanted to honor the community in Pine Bluff.

For more of Lakwena’s vibrant pieces, head to Instagram. Check out this opulent kintsugi court and another angular mural for similarly sports-centered artworks.

 

 

 



Art

Opulent Kintsugi Installation by Artist Victor Solomon Gilds Dilapidated Basketball Court in Los Angeles

August 4, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images by Shafik Kadi and © Victor Solomon, shared with permission

Celebrating the restorative qualities of sports and basketball’s return this past week, Victor Solomon has repaired a deteriorated court in South Los Angeles through the ancient art of Kintsugi—the Japanese method of repairing broken pottery by using metallic substances to mend the fractures. The artist filled cracks in the cement with gold-dust resin, highlighting the years of use “to accentuate the healing as a formative part of its journey,” he says. “Sport can entertain, inspire, and distract, but more apropos than all, the platform of sport can help us heal.” Titled “Kintsugi Court,” the gilded installation has similarly lavish backboards and hoops.

The restored court is just one of Solomon’s explorations into the sport and the ways it intersects with luxury. For more of his embellished projects, head to Instagram. (via The Kids Should See This)