A woman hits an overhead smash, her racquet a guitar in a cubist painting by Braque or Picasso. Her larger than life limbs travel across countries and centuries of time: ancient, modern, eastern, western. My tennis friends tell me she’s not hitting an overhead. She is hitting the ultimate trick shot, swinging and purposefully missing an overhead, then turning the racquet over and hitting a little backhanded flick drop shot. I am bewildered by their imaginative realism, the gumption of anyone hitting trick shots like that. I explain in my best academese that her racquet is simply examined from another perspective or position in time and space. Paintings are not mere imitations of reality, but a play of shapes and lines and different perspectives within the unfolding of space and time. Can space unfold? one asks me as we look directly into the women’s gaze, which seems to meet ours. Her eyes are not on the ball. Tennis 101. Her gaze is cool, self-aware, detached, amused while the geometry of the tennis court’s lines plays games with the geometry of her clothing, her figure. All those gently curved lines in the Parthenon’s columns, Athena’s temple! I see something like them everywhere I look. Let’s lob her again, watch as she hits another overhead smash.
Here are two other works of Tennis Art by Tommervik:
About the Artist: Tommervik is traditionally trained in classical painting and drawing. Elements from cubism, art deco, and avante garde art are depicted in his work. Tommervik’s work has been featured in many publications such as Wired, Vanity Fair, Vogue, New Yorker, Cool Material, Thrillist, and Boing Boing. In addition, his work has been represented in featured films. You can check out his tennis art on his website. These works are also available to purchase as prints.
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