Modern Art and Golf: A load of balls

The different worlds of art and golf tend not to clash too often, but when they do the results can be spectacular. When Columbus, Ohio photographer James Friedman, a self-confessed non-golfer, got his hands on a batch of different golf balls, his first instinct wasn’t to pick up a club.


Mr Friedman instead decided to take a different approach to the art of golf and instead of wielding a club, he used a different tool; a saw. With it, he bisected his collection of golf balls and took some striking photographs of the results.



The collection of 20 photographs is called Interior Design and it showcases the different cores made up of twenty different types of ball.

This work has already captured the imagination of several media outlets who have reported on the striking images, some comparing them to photographs of stars and planets.


Mr Friedmann however has a different view stating that discovering what lay inside the golf balls “inspired me to consider that I could discover, in the unlikeliest of places, elegant formal qualities and surprising metaphorical possibilities.”

Well, having viewed the photographs, here’s what we think are some of the more striking images together with my (very limited artistically) metaphorical possibility:


1. The Ice Creams

To me the two shots below resemble bowls of ice cream. The purple one is obviously a large bowl of delicious blackcurrant ice cream, while the red is a rich luxurious bowl of strawberry ice cream, complete with the seeds.




2. Eye of the Tiger

Is the wrath of Sauron about to strike the golfing community, well gazing into the middle of this golf ball it would appear so. This ball’s core has a striking eye appearance, so it can only be the Eye of the Tiger can’t it?



3. 17th at Sawgrass

Upon viewing this I was immediately taken back to the coverage of the Players Championship and the fly-by previews of the notorious island hole 17th. To me this looks like a rather glorious tribute to this most famous of 17th holes. The only question being, how do you get onto the green in the first place?



4. X Out

This picture worried me as a golfer. If I am seeking true ball flight then having a core that is so off-centre would worry me enormously. I’d love to know what ball this came from, simply because I’d know which one to avoid. A golf ball with a defect? It has to be an X-Out surely?



5. Target Golf

What a striking image this is, three concentric rings of white, red and green against a solid purple, blue core. At first I was tempted to call this “Loony Tunes” after it reminded me of the end of the old style cartoons, but perhaps Target Golf is a much better name.



6. Moonstruck

Perhaps my most favourite of all the images is this one, to me it resembles the moon moving in front of a grey, green planet that could, well, almost be our own.



So what are your thoughts? Do you appreciate the art in these photographs, or is there nothing more to it than a load of golf balls cut in half?


As Mr Friedmann made it clear on his page, he is no golfer.

In fairness, I feel I should do the same and state clearly, I am no artist.


All Pictures courtesy of James Friedmann Photographer

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