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Game Face: de Saisset Museum exhibition celebrates female athletes
Most of the other photographs may not be as familiar. “The diversity of images is very dramatic,” said Karen Kienzle, curator of exhibits and collections at the de Saisset Museum. “My hope is that visitors will discover that female athletes look like everything you can imagine. They come in all shapes and sizes, ethnicities, and ages. They perform all types of sports, on amateur and professional levels.”
Featuring images by photographers such as Mary Ellen Mark, Dorothea Lange, Annie Leibovitz, and Bill Owens, the exhibit captures the images and stories of top athletes and Little League players alike.
The photographs and personal stories span all aspects of athletic competition and are grouped in five thematic areas, reflecting the athlete’s stages of competition: getting ready, start, action, finish, and aftermath. Kienzle hopes the photographs of professional and amateur athletes will challenge some preconceptions viewers might have, and encourage others to participate in sports themselves.
It began with Gottesman’s observation that women’s sports were somewhat neglected in the media. From that frustration, she posed the question, “What does a female athlete look like?” to colleagues and photographers. The images in the exhibition reflect some of the responses she collected.
The exhibition is accompanied by a full-color book published by Random House. This exhibition has been organized by Game Face Productions and sponsored by MassMutual Financial Group, including OppenheimerFunds Inc. The San Jose Mercury News is the media sponsor of the exhibit. “Game Face” is presented in conjunction with the SCU Athletics Department, the SCU Alumni Relations Department, SCU’s Women’s and Gender Studies Program, SCU’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, Team-Up for Youth, and the Bay Area Women’s Sports Initiative. “Game Face” has been endorsed by The Girl Scouts of the USA, Girls Inc., the National Association for Girls and Women in Sport, the Women’s Sports Foundation, and the YMCA of the
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