Art Institute of Boston

Lesley College, Boston, MA



Photographs of America's Baseball Stadiums


Following an exhibition tour sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution, Boston-born photographer Jim Dow will exhibit his "Photographs of America's Baseball Stadiums" at The Art Institute of Boston at Lesley College, at 700 Beacon Street, Boston, a block and a half from Fenway Park.

Magnificently capturing the presence of America's beloved baseball stadiums, the exhibition coincides with the July 13, 1999 major league baseball All Star game. The exhibition features major and minor league ball parks in the U.S. and Canada photographed by renowned photographer Jim Dow over a period of nineteen years.

Described as having the "grandeur and loneliness of ancient ruins," Dow's work has been cherished for documenting the disappearing uniqueness of America's playing fields. In Dow's view, American baseball parks are analogous to medieval cathedrals in being "a center of civic pride where people go to do some combination of worship and dream." Dow's photographs are especially timely in light of the current debate on the future of Fenway Park. (above: Silver Stadium, Rochester, NY, 1992; left: Entrance, Macon Ball Park, Macon, GA, 1984.)

Using multiple color images taken with an 8 x 10 camera, Jim Dow creates highly detailed panoramas offering an unusual view of the ballparks as seen from a fan's point of view. Developed while photographing soccer stadiums in England and influenced by pioneering photographer Walker Evans, Dow's vision results in "astonishing, disturbing, and wholly unexpected" images of the empty spaces. "I have an old-fashioned, romantic approach to picture-making and architecture," Dow says. "But I'm not interested in making specimens, I'm interested in synthesizing an experience."

Jim Dow earned a MFA and BFA in photography and a BFA in graphic design from the Rhode Island School of Design. Since 1977 Dow has been in over 80 exhibitions. Exhibition highlights include the International Museum of Photography in Rochester, NY; Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, MD; the Addison Gallery for American Art, Andover, MA; the Photographic Resource Center, Boston, MA; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York; San Francisco Camera Works, San Francisco, CA; the International Center for Photography, New York, NY and Polaroid Corporation's 50th Anniversary exhibition, "Legacy of Light," among others.

Among his many commissions, he has created photographs for the FleetCenter for the Boston Garden Corporation (1995/96). A version of this exhibit is on permanent display at the FleetCenter and at the New England Sports Museum. Dow has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New England Foundation for the Arts and has been the recipient of numerous grants.

His work is found in many museum, private and corporate collections. These include the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA; the Art Institute of Chicago; the Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZ; the Fogg Museum, Harvard University; the Getty Museum, Los Angeles, CA, the Library of Congress, Washington, D,C.; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY; the Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, and the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, England.

Currently Dow teaches fine art photography, photography and contemporary art history at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Tufts University, and Harvard University. Mr. Dow's photographs have appeared in many publications including The New York Times Magazine, Playboy Japan, and American Photographer.


Read more about the Art Institute of Boston in Resource Library Magazine

For further biographical information on Walker Evans please see America's Distinguished Artists, a national registry of historic artists.

rev. 10/18/10

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