Home > Art, Golf, Museums > The Art of Golf

The Art of Golf

January 10, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

The Ladies' Club, 1886, unknown photographer

[From the British Golf Museum. Reproduced at the High Museum website by kind permission of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews.]

We love art. We love golf. And if we can get ourselves to Atlanta some time between February 5 and June 24, we’ll be able to see the exhibit The Art of Golf at the High Museum of Art. Regrettably, I don’t think this is going to happen. But I can dream. And look at the exhibition website.

At the site, the show has the following blurb: “Explore the history of golf through paintings, drawings, and photos by artists as diverse as Rembrandt, Andy Warhol, and Norman Rockwell. Featuring memorabilia from the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, as well as the largest collection of Bobby Jones portraits ever assembled.” We also learn the following regarding the photograph above:

Formed in 1867, the St Andrews Ladies Club grew to include 500 members within twenty years—a total close to that of the exclusively male Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrew’s membership of 795. Strict conventions governing acceptable dress meant that women were obliged to play in the restrictive, tightly laced, full-length clothes then deemed fashionable and appropriate. More practical golfing attire became popular at the turn of the century.

Here’s another work featured at the website:

Winter Landscape, ca. 1630, Hendrick Avercamp

[From the Scottish National Gallery]

Regarding this one, we learn that

Hendrick Avercamp’s winter scene conveys a message about democratic social values: various classes – rich and poor, old and young, male and female – are bound together through leisure. Nevertheless, kolf was connected to elite status in seventeenth-century Dutch society, here evidenced by the players’ colorful, elegant clothing. The copper support, unusual for Avercamp, provides a smooth surface appropriate to the gemlike quality of the depiction. Two thin tree trunks enclosed in the ice provide the goal for the group of four kolfers in the right foreground.

You know, I’m pretty sure I saw this painting at a show in the National Gallery in Washington, D.C., not that long ago. Yes, I must have. I just found this post that I wrote in May 2010 about a visit to the National Gallery, and in it I briefly mention what I describe as an “intimate” temporary exhibition, Hendrick Avercamp: The Little Ice Age. The painting was surely there.

I wonder if we can squeeze in an Atlanta trip.

[Thanks to Tim Murphy for drawing my attention to the exhibition in this week’s Golf World Monday, the online accompaniment to Golf World Magazine. (And, yes, Golf World Monday came out today, even though today is Tuesday, because the PGA Tour’s opening event, the Tournament of Champions, concluded yesterday.)]

Categories: Art, Golf, Museums
  1. January 12, 2012 at 9:21 AM


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