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Charles Lees
Charles Lees, The Golfers, 1847, Scottish National Portrait Gallery


Aug. 12, 2011

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Feel like your golf game is a work of art? Check it out in “The Art of Golf,” Feb. 4-June 12, 2012, at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. The first-ever museum exhibition devoted entirely to the sport is organized, appropriately enough, with the National Galleries of Scotland.

Curated by Julia Forbes in consultation with golf historian and author Dr. Catherine Lewis, the show features 90 works and traces the history of the royal game, which was founded in Scotland ca. 1740, beginning with the depiction of kolf -- golf’s cousin? -- in early 17th-century Dutch landscape paintings.

Ever heard of Rembrandt’s 1654 etching, The Golfer? It’s included in the show, along with golf-related works by painters from Childe Hassam to Norman Rockwell, photographs by Harold Edgerton -- developer of strobe photography -- and Andy Warhol’s iconic 1977 screenprint of golfing superstar Jack Nicklaus, all anchored around “the greatest golfing painting in the world:” Charles Lees’ The Golfers, never before shown in the U.S. For those more interested in golfing accoutrement, a section on “golfiana” featuring antique balls, clubs and clothing, should do the trick.

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