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Past Exhibitions

The Art of Golf

February 5–June 24, 2012

Explore 400 years of golf through paintings, drawings, and photographs. Featuring objects from The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, as well as the largest collection of Bobby Jones portraits ever assembled.

July 18, 2012 – October 7, 2012
Oklahoma City Museum of Art

Nov 3, 2012 – Feb 17, 2013

Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, FL

Click on an image below to learn more.

Overview

Organized by the High Museum of Art and the National Galleries of Scotland, The Art of Golf explores how European and American artists have depicted the royal and ancient game for more than four centuries.

From the seventeenth-century landscapes of Hendrick Avercamp to Andy Warhol’s portrait of Jack Nicklaus, artists have approached golf from a diverse range of perspectives. In Scotland—the birthplace of the modern game—Charles Lees presented his masterpiece The Golfers in a heroic scale usually reserved for history painting, while in the United States, impressionistic landscapes by Childe Hassam and James McNeill Whistler underscored the relationship between golf, modern ideas about recreation, and genteel manners. Photographer Harold Edgerton dissected the game from a methodical, technological perspective, paralleling the revolution in equipment design and innovations in golf instruction, and Norman Rockwell’s illustrations for The Saturday Evening Post poked gentle fun at the foibles experienced by a new generation of middle-class golfers. Finally, native Atlantan Robert Tyre “Bobby” Jones, Jr., was one of the game’s most beloved players and deserves credit for popularizing the game on both sides of the Atlantic. Jones was a favored subject for artists throughout most of the twentieth century, having served as a bridge between the United States and Scotland—an ambassador, of sorts, beloved by both countries for his dedication, integrity, and love for the game.

The Art of Golf brings together extraordinary, rare, and even whimsical works of art to celebrate what Jones called “a game of considerable passion.”

Organization and Support

The exhibition is made by possible by Lead Sponsor Sotheby’s, The Imlay Foundation, The Sara Giles Moore Foundation, the Friends of Golf and the Friends of Scotland: Frances Bunzl, Marcia and John Donnell, Gayle Kennedy, Jo Ann and Nick Nicholson, Kathy and Bill Rayner, Sharon and Chip Shirley, Margaretta Taylor, Joan N. Whitcomb, PGA TOUR Superstore and Audio Visual Sponsor AVYVE.

Additional support is provided by The Fay and Barrett Howell Exhibition Fund and The Eleanor McDonald Storza Exhibition Endowment Fund.

The managing curator of the exhibition is Julia Forbes, the High’s Shannon Landing Amos Head of Museum Interpretation, and the consulting curator is Dr. Catherine Lewis, professor, golf historian and author of nine books including “Don’t Ask What I Shot: How Eisenhower’s Love of Golf Helped Shape 1950s America.”

The exhibition will be accompanied by a full-color catalogue featuring essays by Dr. Tico Seifert, Senior Curator of Dutch Art, National Galleries of Scotland; Jordan Mearns, National Galleries of Scotland; Dr. Catherine Lewis; and Rand Jerris, Senior Managing Director of Public Services, United States Golf Association.

The Art of Golf was on view at the High from February 5 through June 3, 2012. It toured to additional U.S. venues through the fall of 2013.

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