BULL CITY SUMMER 2014
"Bull City Summer converged a team of artists to document the 2013 season at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, making a record of the sights and sounds perhaps missed by journalism. International renowned photographers Alex Harris, Frank Hunter, Kate Joyce, Elizabeth Matheson, Leah Sobsey, Alec Soth, Hank Willis Thomas and Hiroshi Watanabe, and a team of writers led by Adam Sobsey were on the team. The resulting book was also accompanied by exhibitions at the North Carolina Museum of Art and the Contemporary Art Museum Raleigh, along with a feature documentary film by Ivan Weiss, Leaving Traces, which was selected in the Fall of 2014 for the Baseball Hall of Fame Film Festival in Cooperstown, NY and the On Photography Film Festival in Amsterdam, demonstrating the unique crossover nature of the project. Bull City Summer was covered by the New York Times, the New Yorker, Harper’s, Mother Jones, Slate, ARTnews, and two French art magazines, among others." (From Bull City Summer project director and writer Sam Stephenson)
“Kate Joyce’s typologies are some of my favorite photographs. She took some ninety thousand pictures over roughly a thousand hours in preparing for and realizing the BCS project. But these grouped photographs—the lawn darts, the abandoned concessions, the white smudges made by balls hitting the Blue Monster in left field—are the clearest indication that she, like me, was trying to make sense of a game that is as much about ritual as it is about rules. These accumulations make up a pattern, a vocabulary, through which Joyce can begin to understand the larger language.” Nicole Rudick, “Bull City Redux” The Paris Review, March 20, 2014
RICK WESTER FINE ART presented a solo exhibition of Kate Joyce's photographs from Bull City Summer, June 12th - August 1st, 2014
"I'm drawn to the routine trauma and grace wound into every swing during batting practice. Practice usually takes place during the hottest part of the day, so perspiration mottles the batters' gray T-shirts and creates a drape over their musculature. The torso is emphasized. not the arms. Their bodies resemble the sculptures found in Western art museums: much surviving classical Greek and Roman sculpture is miss the most vulnerable parts of the carving - hands, arms, head, which have been lost over time - leaving only the torso, waist and hips. In the baseball swing, much of the strength comes from that same middle area of the body.
The pitchers are more like dancers. Their motions are choreographed, predetermined, not reactive. When they wrap around themselves after they throw the ball, they are led into a twist, a spiral. It's like ballet. There's a tremendous precision and an ability to repeat those movements over and over again.
I'm looking for gestures or moments that are entry points into the game and into this place. If I look at a sports photograph of a pitcher on the mound, it doesn't mean much to me. I can't analyze his body or his grip to know what kind of ball he's going to throw. So I'm making images that contain gestures and body language I can relate to."
From Bull City Summer: A season at the ballpark, Kate Joyce artist statement, p. 203)
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