Jason Evans’s “Boys of Summer” At Newport Museum of Art
June 15, 2017
Photographer Jason Evans had wanted to shoot the Gulls, a college baseball team based in Newport, Rhode Island, for a long time. He finally had his chance in the summer of 2015, and instead of shooting only practices or games in a typical manner, he decided to take an artistic approach.
One element that inspired the work is the Gulls Stadium. It is beautiful, old and compact, Evans says, and it’s close enough to the ocean that it gets fog some nights and beautiful sunsets on others—an ideal element to aid his artistic ambitions.
When photographing the players, Evans says he wanted to get as close as possible—closer than was allowed at the Olympics or at professional venues. This of course posed some safety risks, but having built a rapport with the team, Evans says the players looked out for him, and one even barehanded a foul ball coming right at his head in the on-deck circle.
Once the project was completed, Evans realized that he had a body of work that could be considered for the local Newport Art Museum and, upon showing the curator, his work was accepted for a summer show called “Boys of Summer.” (This is Evans’s second body of work to be exhibited at the museum. His first was a series that depicted Newport surfers.)
One key benefit of the Gulls show is that it exposes unfamiliar subjects to both the baseball team and art goers, and it encourages a crossover of ideas, the photographer says. By bringing baseball imagery into the museum, Evans believes baseball fans might attend the museum, and on the flip side, art fans might be encouraged to attend baseball games.
The work will be on view at the Newport Art Museum through September 10, 2017.
All of Evans’s work can be viewed at his website or PhotoServe portfolio.