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'Arthur Ashe Meditating, 2023' Edition Print

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What began as a tool to process South African artist Shaun Ellison’s relationship to the sport of tennis has grown into a vibrant, evocative practice that captures the spontaneity and frailty of groups, success and failure in sport. Based in Brooklyn, New York, the artist brings unity to many of the inherent contradictions of tennis and its history, and uses color, expressive composition, and unexpected figures and motifs to touch on the diversity, rigor and growth of the sport and its cultural legacy. Ellison studied at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, School of Visual Arts and NY Studio School. While at Louisiana Lafayette, the artist played for the school’s Division 1 tennis team before competing professionally on the ATP Tour. Recent exhibitions include Hit & Miss at Taymour Grahne Projects (London, UK).

Arthur Ashe Meditating is a quiet composition rendered in cool grays and greens honoring the late, men’s champion, Arthur Ashe. The first and only black man to ever win the US Open, Wimbledon, and the Australian Open, Ashe rose through the rankings beginning in the late 1960’s reaching #1 in 1975, all while navigating discriminatory practices throughout the world that fought to prevent him from competing. Neither a beginning nor an end, Ellison’s Ashe blends into the stands and surrounding walls while the faceless crowd swells around the stairs above, blending together in the background, exemplifying the quiet mind of an athlete at pause. A homage to one of the greatest American players to ever live, Arthur Ashe Meditating captures the isolation and contemplation of working toward goals the world seems to constantly work against.

Arthur Ashe Meditating, 2023
17.5 x 13 Inches
Archival pigment print

Edition of 40 with 5AP + 1PP
Signed and numbered by the artist

“I am deeply concerned about our planet, and I know that planting trees will help contribute to slowing down the effects of climate change,” says Ellison on the collaboration. “I have tried to recycle things I have around me and also used waste as part of my practice. I hope to keep bringing awareness to the effects of climate change through my work, and contributing toward improvements whenever I can.”

ART FOR CHANGE will plant ten trees for each work sold in support of global reforestation efforts. As in all series, artists will receive 50% of the net proceeds of sales. 

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