The ecstatic chaos of the photographer’s composite images of sporting events offers a frenzied, unique, and bizarre sense of realism, writes the online magazine luxurydefined by Christie’s International Real Estate in an article about the photographic artist Pelle Cass.

Photo: Pelle Cass

In works such as HU Pole Vault (2019), Cass uses Photoshop to make images that are “rooted in reality or true feeling, rather than perfecting images of attractive people and places. Photo compositing should make things more real, not less.”

According to luxurydefined, it was the editor of a magazine who, unwittingly, led Pelle Cass to start creating his hyper-real, hyper-busy sports photographs. Cass says: “The key moment was when a publication commissioned me to photograph the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks. The editor insisted that I keep it pure basketball. I wanted to include all sorts of random stuff—hot dog vendors, cheerleaders, coaches—that came on to the court. But he kept the focus on action and movement. And he was right! It took me a couple of years to start doing sports full time in 2018. But after that, I kept the focus on the movement and the athletes.”

Photo: Pelle Cass

BC Spring Football A (2021) compresses the energy of a couple of hours and thousands of exposures into a single image, capturing a sense of what Cass describes as “Dionysian chaos.”

“Dozens and even hundreds of moments add up to more information and truth than a conventional photo can convey with its single instant,” he continues. Whether he is depicting a basketball court teeming with players, or a pool overfilled with thrashing bodies, the tried-and-tested Pelle Cass approach is to place a camera on a tripod and “take thousands of pictures over an hour or two.”

Photo: Pelle Cass

Shot in Brooklyn, New York, Cass names Congress Street (2017) from the Selected People collection as one of his favorite photos.

Read the full article here.