The Baker Museum Lecture Series
Flashing the Leather:
Baseball and Contemporary Art
Aaron Levi Garvey, independent curator
Art and design have been prevalent throughout the history of baseball, from logo designs to baseball cards to uniforms. The lecture Flashing the Leather (a baseball term used to admiringly describe a dexterous defensive play) will explore baseball as a point of artistic reference and inspiration over the decades, focusing particularly on the period from the infamous baseball strike of 1994 to the present day. This talk will highlight works of art that address the rituals and concepts within baseball and baseball history, archetypes and superstitions unique to the game and the use of baseball objects as an artist’s medium. Baseball’s long history includes a checkered past of ups and downs, from celebrated historic social justice figures to steroid and sign-stealing scandals. Yet, baseball has been at the epicenter of American culture for nearly 200 years and has permeated cultures around the globe as a form of community building. Flashing the Leather takes a deep dive into baseball’s social underpinnings as told through contemporary artists’ voices, using metaphors, concepts and superstitions from the sport.
This presentation is part of the exhibition Baseball Heroes: Works from the Jay H. Baker Collection.
A professionally administered negative COVID-19 rapid antigen or PCR test, along with a valid matching photo ID, is required for all visitors 12 and older. In lieu of a negative COVID-19 test, voluntary proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19, along with a valid matching photo ID, may be presented. Masks are encouraged, and they are required for children between the ages of 2 and 11 unless a negative COVID-19 test or voluntary proof of being fully vaccinated (for children ages 5-11 eligible for vaccination) is presented on their behalf. Certain artists and ensembles may require masks. For more information, please visit our COVID-19 Protocols.