Sports Balls

On a December evening in 2002, when I was driving home from my studio, an abandoned football got caught under one of the wheel arches of his car. This chance encounter seemed to kick-start a sequence of almost uncannily frequent meetings with old sports balls, I decided to photograph them, framing the project as a response to the way in which many contemporary artists choose to give found objects – naked, unadulterated, resolutely ordinary – the status of an art work. The resulting images represent a deliberate attempt to go beyond the practice of simply relocating objects, attempting to do something more to alter the status of the balls, as well as document the clues they present about their individual histories. Shot under studio lighting with all the stand-alone drama of a celebrity portrait, and reproduced at an unfamiliar scale, the balls take on a new and surreal appearance – and reveal powerful, often comic, physiognomies.

Images from this project form part of the collection of prints and posters to purchase on Ball to all that Sports Images