Michael Litzau
My artwork uses sports as a vehicle to investigate and celebrate issues of fandom, ritual, and fantasy. I have grown up being a fan of football and avidly follow the Green Bay Packers. Throughout the football season I am enamored with the competition, the will to succeed, the drama, but above all else the overwhelming sense of community that being a fan of football affords. With fellow Packers fans I can talk about how our players are doing, with rival fans I can joke about who’s better, and with everyone there is a debate on how the season is going. My artwork utilizes group thoughts as well as my own individual opinions about how the Packer season is going. Through quotes and imagery my artwork addresses what it is to be a fan.
Through fantasy football I become a general manager of a team. I can draft, cut, and pick players up through waivers. Football information is available 24/7 and new headlines about the season constantly appear to be read immediately. As an outsider looking in I live vicariously through these players.
Ritual is described as an established or prescribed procedure for a religious or other rite. In my life and artistic practice ritual has become an important factor. On football Sundays I wear a specific shirt, sit in my specific seat, and do not eat anything during the game. These common activities are transformed to a higher importance, through ritual, to acts that help the Packers win. In my artistic practice I have embraced the technique of meticulously hand cutting scrapbook paper. By spending countless obsessive hours on attention to detail I elevate my subject matter from a mere image to an iconic level.