May 5, 2010

Andrea Modica: Minor League at Gallery 339 in Philadelphia

Andrea Modica: Minor League
Gallery 339, Fine Art Photography, Philadelphia
Through June 12, 2010

Minor League is an exhibition by Andrea Modica on view at the Gallery 339 in Philadelphia.  The images in Minor League are from the early 1990s, a time when Modica was living in a small town in upstate New York.  Modica says that while not previously a baseball fan, she had the opportunity to attend a game featuring the local team, the Oneonta Yankees, a “Short Season A” affiliate of the New York Yankees. This initial summer ball game led to a two-year project to photograph the players of the “O” Yankees.  Like many of her projects, Modica was drawn to this one by a desire to understand a world that she found puzzling and somewhat intimidating.  On the surface, baseball seemed frivolous to her, merely a game; why would grown men do this, she wondered.  Concurrently, she found the strident masculinity of the sport and its ambiguous set of rules and codes unsettling. Ultimately, she recognized that something which offered such interesting questions and made her a bit uncomfortable must be worth investigating. Over time, the project opened up to Modica the fascinating human level of minor league sports: its hard work, fierce ambition, and the essential but slim hope of making it to the major leagues.  Her picture-taking revealed to her the complex issues of success and failure with which the players must grapple on a daily basis.  Her pictures also offered an understanding of the multifaceted relationships among the players, who exhibited both a tight-knit camaraderie and a determined competitiveness. Modica eventually found that as an artist, who must contend with similar issues around success and self motivation, she had more in common with these players than she could have imagined.  As part of the Minor League exhibition, Gallery 339 will host an artist talk and book signing with Andrea Modica on Saturday, May 1.

ANDREA MODICA received her BFA in Visual Arts and Art History from the State University of New York College at Purchase (1982) and her MFA in Photography from Yale University (1985). Among her many accomplishments, Modica has received a Guggenheim Arts Fellowship (1994) and a Fulbright-Hays Research Grant (1990). Her photographs have been published in numerous magazines including Harper's, Newsweek, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and The New York Times Magazine. Her books include Treadwell (Chronicle Books, 1995) and Minor League (The Smithsonian Institution, 1993).  Modica’s work has been exhibited in galleries and museums around the world and has been collected by institutions including the Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the George Eastman House in Rochester, NY, The National Museum of American Art in Washington, D.C. and The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

April 16, 2010 - June 12, 2010

Previous exhibitions at Gallery 339:

Stuart Rome: Drawn From Nature, January 29, 2010 - April 3, 2010
Henry Horenstein: SHOW, January 29, 2010 - April 3, 2010

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