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Dear Adam Silver Podcast

Dear Adam Silver is a podcast hosted by Abigail Smithson. The show is an artist's take on sports; an ongoing verbal letter to the commissioner of the National Basketball Association, the podcast is meant to create a place for sports and art to exist and be considered alongside one another. The practices of athletes and artists are both rooted in the desire to make a mark, where technical skill, originality and building on the past are crucial to the success of each. Through representation and analysis, sports and fine art also have the power to translate and help us reconsider the largest issues we face as a society. On each episode, I will be discovering and discussing the many connections between the two alongside artists, athletes, journalists, commentators, critics and fans.

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Seph Rodney

"Organized sports may be one of the great achievements of the modern state: they provide a means of public release of frustration, and they model the achievements of a supposedly meritocratic society. They also locate and inscribe a tribal identity that at times appears to transcend race and social class. But the awful truth is that is doesn’t. And now I understand why audiences are so enraged by athletes taking a knee: because these men and women are our dreams, manifesting a grace that the rest of us lack, a grace we expect to stay aloft, in the air."

--Seph Rodney, from The Political Truths That Ground Our Athletic Heroes

Seph Rodney, PhD, is an art and culture critic based in New York City. He is a staff writer and editor for Hyper Allergic and is also a member of the faculty at Parsons School of Design.More information about Seph can be found on his website: sephrodney.com.His writing can be found on Hyper Allergic: hyperallergic.com/author/seph-rodney/. He is also one of the hosts of the The American Age podcast. Make sure to listen and subscribe: theamericanage.org/podcast/


Ronny Quevedo

Ronny Quevedo is a visual artist based in The Bronx. His work offers us a non-traditional approach to the spaces where sports are played while alluding to pre-colonial Latin American symbolism in much of his mark making. Through his work, basketball courts become both celebratory and spiritual, soccer balls are brought into question as a tool of oppression and the audience is called upon to rethink the rules and confines that exist in sports and ultimately, the rest of our culture.

Quevedo's work can be seen at www.ronnyquevedo.info

Seph Rodney's review of Quevedo's piece "no hay media tiempo" can be read in full at hyperallergic.com/392117/a-vision-…the-melting-pot/


Carrie Ann Welsh

Carrie Ann Welsh is a writer for ESPNW. She approaches the game of baseball through the lens of a poet, searching for meaning beyond physical boundaries. We discussed what formed her sense of the game as well as our own perception of athletes playing at the highest levels.

You can read Carrie's essays on baseball by clicking on the following links:




Glauco Adorno

Glauco Adorno(a dear friend of mine) is an art historian and curator based in New Orleans, LA. For this episode we adjusted our original topic of tennis to discuss the recent shootings at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA and Kroger's in Jeffersontown, KY. We discuss these two horrific events through the lens of artists and focus on fear around the body, racism, religion and empathy.


R. Eric McMaster

R. Eric McMaster is an artist making work about the most physically practiced and trained people: athletes. Through his practice he disrupts their normal routine. We also speak about his work that uses sports to highlight our social hierarchy and the use and control of the body. Eric’s work can be viewed at http://rericmcmaster.com

Brian Tran

Brian Tran, writer, die hard Dodgers and Lakers fan and MFA candidate at Washington University in St. Louis, joins the first episode of Dear Adam Silver to discuss why we both love basketball, critique and analyze some of our favorite(and most famous)players and begin to break down our relationships with representation of athletes.