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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Catholic Church becomes tennis court

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Serve to Paul: Church becomes tennis court
Whether St. Paul enjoyed ball games is not known. The famous scenes from the life of the Prince of the Apostles can be seen in the Church of San Paolo Converso - on the tennis court.

Playing tennis in a former church: this is now possible at San Paolo Converso in Milan. The American artist, Asad Raza converted the Baroque building, which has housed an architect's office since 2014, into a fully functioning tennis court. Where once the worshipers followed the Mass, a red court with net has been constructed The scenery is made up of magnificent frescoes from the life of the Apostle Paul from baptism to martyrdom. Equipment and teachers are provided to the players for free.

The interactive artwork of Raza is titled "Untitled (Plot for Dialogue)". For Raza, the game is a method to "transform excess energy into symbolic, but harmless practices," says the explanation of the artwork. As a result of playing tennis, visitors to the artwork would become more than mere spectators. The sacral building of "the converted Paul" dating back to the 16th century was secularised by Napoleon in 1808 and since then no longer has been used as a church.

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From another site

"The goal is to subvert the logic of communication typical of the religious context, replacing a authoritarian one-way message, a recreational and exchange activity. 

Sport, in the imagination of the artist, is a metaphor of the importance of unproductive activities that are out of control of work-centered social logics"
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