Spin the Ball

By Catarina Figueiredo Soares

Spinning the world through basketball to deliver a bigger message, maybe it’s something you’ve never seen? Lakwena Maciver presents the Jump Paintings. Imagine sending a message through art using the most inspiring basketball players and creating a plywood painting with the exact same height as the player. When we think about basketball players, we think about them spinning the ball on their finger in the same way in these paintings there is a spin between basketball, heaven and earth with the addition of  words to deliver a message with a deeper meaning. Vigo Gallery is presenting this exhibition that has so much colour, joy, and succinct, profound messages. Dunk into these paintings and keep reading more in Spin the ball.

PH credits : courtesy of Vigo Gallery and Lakwena Maciver

It seems like the artist is depicting the basketball court as earthly and the players jumping as heavenly because when the players jump it looks like they are flying doesn’t it? It seems as they transcend gravity, boundaries and they exceed the limits. This metaphor of life is show in Lakwenas’ paintings, and a bigger message can be grasp. 

I’m interested in what brings us closer together, so for me these paintings are about being aspirational, dreaming, and the connection between people, but also about the link between heaven and earth and ourselves as individuals in relation to a higher power.’

Dribble your way into colourful, glittery, and wavy paintings with us.

Dennis Rodman (6’7’’), a former NBA player, that accumulated seven of the top ten rebound percentage seasons (how good a player is at gaining possession of the ball after a missed free throw or field goal) in the NBA history is celebrated in this painting. The player was briefly in a relationship with Madonna, but it got a lot of publicity. With a psychedelic glitter and the words ‘MOVE FREELY’ this identifies his personality, style, and achievements.

Lakwena Maciver
Dennis, 2021
Acrylic and polyurethane on plywood
201 x 107 cm
79 1/8 x 42 1/8 inches
(V06400 – Dennis Rodman)

Larry Bird (6’9’’), a Celtics’ legendary playmaker, is the only person in the history of NBA to win MVP (Most Valuable Player), Executive of the Year and Coach of the Year in a career. Larry is known for his intuition and for practicing 3-pointers (anywhere outside the three-point arc) with his eyes closed. Due to this, Lakwena in his painting wrote the words ‘MAGIC VISION’ to express the players’ intuition and confidence. 

Lakwena Maciver
Larry, 2021
Acrylic and polyurethane on plywood
206 x 110 cm
81 1/8 x 43 1/4 inches
(V06397 – Larry Bird)

Michael Jordan (6’6’’) is by acclamation, the greatest basketball player of all time. You might know him because of his partnership with Nike. In this painting, with waves of different colours and the words ‘JUMP HIGH’, Jordan is the inspiration.

Lakwena Maciver
Michael, 2021
Acrylic and polyurethane on plywood
198 x 105 cm
78 x 41 3/8 inches
(V06391 – Michael Jordan)

Shaquille O’Neal (7’1’’), also known as ‘Shaq’, had different and numerous nicknames throughout his career. The one that remained was ‘Superman’ due to his humorous and lively attitude while being the biggest nightmare for the opposing team. So, in this painting, there is a zigzag of two colours and the artist writes the words ‘SUPER MAN’.

Lakwena Maciver
Shaquille, 2021
Acrylic and polyurethane on plywood
216 x 115 cm
85 1/8 x 45 1/4 inches
(V06398 – Shaquille O’Neal)

Yao Ming (7’6’’), is a former NBA player and the first China native to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. He is in the Hall of Fame as Global Ambassador of Basketball because his career didn’t have many awards or championship rings to be together with the greatest of basketball. To celebrate him, the artist chose various colours, painted a flower and the words ‘COMPETITION FIRST SECOND FRIENDSHIP’.

Lakwena Maciver
Yao, 2021
Acrylic and polyurethane on plywood
229 x 122 cm
90 1/8 x 48 1/8 inches
(V06399 – Yao Ming)

The exhibition is available until the 28th of February 2022, to find out more go to Vigo Gallery.

If you enjoyed reading Spin the Ball, why not check out Anti-Trim BALMAIN?

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