#Hot Corner

eBay Item of the Day: Art is Hard

And the proof is in this painting.

Today's item is a baseball-themed painting by "S. Samson." The price is reasonable and, according to the seller, the money will go to "help with fundraiser." They also state it was donated by "baseball player R. Kutcher." Can we assume they mean Randy Kutcher, who played for the Giants and Red Sox in the ‘80s?


But the important thing here is the painting itself. Let's face it: art is hard. There are so many things one has to worry about when embarking on a painting such as this. There's perspective, color, facial expressions, poses, proportions -- or maybe those things don't matter. I, an admitted vulgarian, don't pretend to know. I only know what I see, and what I see is a work that either ignores convention out of disinterest on the part of the artist or thumbs its nose at it. If the latter is the case, then the painting demands closer inspection and interpretation, which I will attempt to provide below...


Undersized ball. It's larger than a golf ball, but smaller than a baseball.

Interpretation of artist's intent: Our goals in life are far more elusive than we think them to be.


Misplaced earflap. One usually wears it on the side of the head facing the pitcher.

Interpretation of artist's intent: Fear is to be addressed, through invention, and then ignored. This suggests freedom.


Positioning of back foot. It's either facing directly away from the pitcher or it doesn't exist at all.

Interpretation of artist's intent: We are all slaves of tradition and routine. Just because something has never been tried before doesn't mean it won't work.


Undersized number: It's too small to be seen from anywhere beyond the on-deck circle.

Interpretation of artist's intent: We are all numbers in our modern, materialistic society. Fight the power, be less of a number and more of an individual.


Oddly-shaped chest protector. It is split down the middle, and leaves the most vulnerable part of the chest exposed.

Interpretation of artist's intent: The protector is shaped like a stylized heart, yet, ironically, leaves the heart unprotected. That is our lot in this world - trying to shield ourselves from pain when it is eternally unavoidable.


Non-regulation masks. They cover the mouth entirely, but do not the bridge of the nose or the eyes.

Interpretation of artist's intent: Authority figures are bandits and we, the common person, will eventually ape their banditry in both appearance and deed.


Catcher's foot positioning. He appears to be assuming the second position of ballet's cinq positions des pieds. Is it possible for a human to do even do this in a squatting position?

Interpretation of artist's intent: Art should not concern itself with reality, nor with the constraints of human physiology. Besides, who is to say this is not the next step of evolution?


Unorthodox plate and batter's box. The sides of the pentagon that parallel to the batter's box are much too short and the batter's box begins too far forward end extends too far out into the field of play.

Interpretation of artist's intent: We are all prisoners of self-imposed constraints. We will not truly be enlightened until we learn to alter the physical world around us with our minds.


Oddly rendered catcher's mitt. No webbing. Hinged on both sides.

Interpretation of artist's intent: The place from whence we all came.

Jim Baker's latest book is The Most Memorable Games in Patriots History. You can follow him on Twitter @jimbaker1066.

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