Pelle Cass's Crowded Fields
Crowded Fields at Foto Relevance is an exhibition by Pelle Cass featuring selections from a critically acclaimed, ongoing series of work capturing hours of dynamic action in a single still frame. A bacchanal of bodies in motion fills each field of play and contrasts with the rules of organized sports. The order and disorder of his frenzied time-lapses allow the viewer to experience the whole event within a single instant, altering how time is perceived.
The images in Crowded Fields transform viewers in the gallery into spectators on the sidelines and in the bleachers. The artist acts as a proxy, attending various college sporting events and capturing not just one moment to show to us, but hundreds. Setting up his tripod, Cass takes up to a thousand images of each match, game, meet, or race, and carefully stitches together bodies and balls in motion to engineer the perfect balance of chaos and composition. The artist refers to the final product as "a kind of a still time-lapse" where nothing is altered, just selectively combined and omitted. Quarters blend together, tops and bottoms of innings are topsy-turvy, and over time are indistinguishable from the rest.
Cass is attuned to the disorientation that team sports can inspire. As written by Laura Bannister for Artsy, "In these Whereʼs Waldo–esque spectacles, every player resembles the next. Balls are always in flight. Actions are hyper-compressed in a way that renders individual players obsolete—something Cass sees as “truer to memory”—creating a kind of chaotic visual symphony."
Through these carefully crafted snapshots, Cass conveys a "sense of play, the eeriness of time, and a feeling of Dionysian chaos." The emotions of each moment of play are not lost in the reshuffling, but rather amplified by the frenzy. Join us to experience hours in moments, movement as stillness, and be transported courtside within the gallery walls.