Tales from the Pitch - Sport as Art

Jovis, Aquarius 6, 2077, m249


The name of this piece is “Lament in Red”, and the artist is Taylor Kaur-Williams, a die hard Al’Amal fan born and raised in the settlement. This is a very personal piece, for it represents a new phase in Taylor's career and allowed her to become Mars’s first break out artist.

Working as both a painter and sculptor, Taylor had previously used traditional materials to create her pieces. Her early career was less than notable, but full of simple still life images set against discordant coloured backgrounds. Art critics were not impressed. Taylor was in an artistic funk, and on a lark decided to check out the new sport in her home settlement, MAFL.

“I was hooked from the first second of play,” she said. “Everything about it was amazing. You have action, tragedy, triumph – drama on the field was the inspiration I was hoping for.” After that first match Taylor began to think about using this new sport as a muse, but was wary of how her (admittedly) small number of fans would react.

“I wasn’t making much money, but my fans were putting food on my table,” she said. “What if they decided they hated MAFL?” She began to fiddle with a small piece of stone with the intent of carving a player image into it, all the while worrying more and more what the art world would think of her change in direction and theme.

“Lament in Red” is an expressive self portrait of an artist who found herself at a crossroads, and creates something new to overcome that fear. The atmosphere of Mars surrounds and envelopes her; red dominates the piece.

And for good reason: Martian soil  was mixed in with her paints giving everything a heavier red tone. While at first dismissed as a gimmick, this quickly set her apart from other Martian artists. Subsequent pieces dealt specifically with aspects of the game and images of players and in game action, but this first, quieter, piece is really what unleashed the floodgates of creativity.

I chose this as the topic of this week’s article not simply because I’m a fan of Taylor work, but rather to show further evidence of the importance of the Mars Aero Football League and the impact it is having on the citizens of the proud colony of ours.

Sports is often considered inspirational, but usually as a model for physical prowess or exceptional athletic skill. Sports is not as often considered an inspiration for art and culture, but, beginning with “Lament in Red”, Taylor has created a new genre.

Several piece of homage and outright copying followed, but it is the work of Taylor that is the most sought after.

Every innovation we make, every new path we forge on Mars has continuous ripple effects. MAFL didn’t set out to create a new art genre here on Mars, but that is what happened. This inaugural season has proven more popular and more important than any of us would have thought possible. As you view the playoffs with anticipation think of that, and take pride in the pioneers and explorers that are every Martian.