Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum: Picturing Pittsburgh's Athletes


Sports art, the rendering of the human figure engaged in activity or the athlete in repose, has a long tradition. The Greeks believed the perfect body was an athlete’s—they decorated vases and urns with images of sportsmen competing and adorned temples with life-size sculptures of the human body in motion. They used this art of athletes to commemorate victory, to confer hero status on competitors, and to create a visual representation of the attributes that Greek society valued. Art focused on the athlete captured the struggle to persevere and triumph, as well as the exhilaration of victory.

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