Young Hawk, Batting Cage, Sedgwick Playground, Edition 1 of 7
Title: Young Hawk, Batting Cage, Sedgwick Playground, Edition 1 of 7
Artist: Michael Koehler, US
Materials: Gelatin Silver Print
Dimensions: Framed-22 x 30 in.; Unframed-15 x 22 in.
Price: Framed-$950; Unframed-$800
Object ID Number: FFMKo2
Object Number: FFMKo2
Notes: When I approached the batting cage, the young red tail hawk sat on the pitcher protector and looked right into my eyes. His natural beauty and elegant strength radiated from him as he sat, trapped inside this cage of practice and hard work. Similar to the trunk of the tree, within this cage art is born. Repetition creates the sacredness of the space, then the young batter is released back into the world with the confidence and understanding of how to make an impact in the game, and more importantly that in life practice and hard work create magic and art. As I walked into the cage, the young hawk swooped at me as I ducked to the ground. I then asked for a little help from Gerry who was mowing the lawn. He came with a 2 x 4 and propped open the net as I made my arms big and tried to shoe the hawk out. On its way out it held on to the net for a second and spread its wings, showing its size and glory before gently dropping to its feet and leaving the cage while giving me a powerful look - somewhere in between a thank you and a challenge. Back in the day when I was young, I spent many a day in that cage learning to hit and practicing my swing, believing in the process. The baseball bat I made with John's guidance was for my son, with the words "true gentleness equals true strength and true strength equals true gentleness" a quote I learned from my father. As my son watched me get the hawk out of the cage and release it to the world, I hope he appreciated and saw the art within the cage the way John saw the art within the tree trunk.