- A view of the Freedarko John Hope Franklin Center gallery
The Freedarko collective blog
has always taken an intense view of professional basketball and its heroes. Taking the whole of the NBA in their sights, Nathaniel Friedman (under the name Bethlehem Shoals) and his co-writers, sporting such tart nicknames as Dr. Lawyer IndianChief, Silverbird 5000, and Brown Recluse, Esq., bring a fresh, intellectual view of sport, especially the power and cult of personality around The Player.
Their first book, The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac
, deeply explored The Player. Now they have a second book, The Undisputed Guide to Pro Basketball History
digging deeper into the basketball universe.
At Duke's John Hope Franklin Center, a new show focuses on the visual work surrounding their vision, including the in-house artist Jacob Weinstein's vibrant portraits. From the show's wall text, "FreeDarko provides an outsider's perspective. But we prefer to think of it as a complement to the way sports usually does business, a way to get more out of pro basketball than simply 82 games and the playoffs—a recognition that for the obsessive, engaged or speculative fan, what happens on the court is merely the beginning of the game."
The show runs until January 7. Don't miss it.