Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Byron Motley Photos Featured in the July 2008 issue of Vanity Fair Magazine

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Baseball is Cuba’s unchallenged National Pastime and most beloved sport. The phenomenon of baseball on the island is unto a world of its own and one that has yet to be fully explored visually through the world of photography.

Two of Mr. Motley’s photographs reflecting the Cuban baseball experience were published in the July 2008 issue of Vanity Fair Magazine.


Viva Cuba Béisbol - The Photo Exhibit will be the first photojournalistic exhibit specifically devoted to capturing the current day spirit of baseball in Cuba. With photography from Cuban cultural enthusiast and baseball aficionado Byron Motley, Viva Cuba Béisbol will depict all levels of Cuban baseball as seen through the lens of Byron Motley.

Produced in cooperation with high level Cuban entities including:

● The Cuban Ministry of Culture
● INDER (Instituto Nacional de Deportes, Educaion,
Fiaica y Recreacion), and
● The International Press Center in Havana,

Viva Cuba Béisbol – The Photographic Exhibit will explore all levels of Cuban baseball from little leagues to the professionals of the Cuban national team and beyond. Portraits, candids and game action photos will all explore the heart and soul of the game. The exhibit is projected to be shown in galleries and venues in several countries including Cuba, Mexico, Canada and the United States.

The game of baseball is revered by Cuba’s approximately 12,000,000 (twelve million) residents in a way that borders on fanaticism. Even those who don’t follow the sport on a daily basis are still emboldened by the prideful nationalism which the game evokes throughout the country. From the hustle, bustle streets of Havana to more rural settings in towns such as Cienfuegos and Vinales, Cubans embrace the sport of baseball more than any other universal sport. Baseball is a true cultural phenomenon. Kids of all ages play baseball everywhere from street corners, apartment buildings, parks, alleyways, and every nook and cranny that can provide the faintest semblance of a baseball diamond. Not letting the lack of material goods negatively affect their love of the game, children play the game of baseball with whatever they can find that resembles the typical hardware of the game. Bottle caps become baseballs. Broom sticks become bats. Flattened cardboard boxes become bases. Nothing can stop them from playing.

Capturing the many moods of Cuban baseball, Viva Cuba Béisbol - The Photo Exhibit will combine the usage of color, black & white, and digital effected images that will be photographed using a variety of photographic techniques including digital, 35mm and medium format cameras.

The exhibit will inform, educate and inspire the observer to the lore and love that is Viva Cuba Béisbol.


National Baseball Hall of Fame - Cooperstown, NY - May 2009 - January 2010

International Press Center - Havana, Cuba - May 17 - June 30, 2009

Byron Motley

My photo
As a photographer, Byron’s work has shown in galleries, boutiques and museums in the United States as well as Europe. His exhibit “Viva Cuba Beisbol: A Photographic Journey into the heart and soul of Cuban Baseball” recently enjoyed a six-month gallery exhibit at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. His photographs have also appeared in Vanity Fair, The Advocate, USA Today and 3Sixty magazines. A 2011 calendar entitled "The Boys of Summer" featuring Byron's photography will soon be available. With diverse interests and talents, Byron is currently producing a television documentary about the historic Negro Baseball Leagues in partnership with acclaimed producer/director Penny Marshall. An accomplished singer/songwriter, Byron has performed and recorded with such luminaries as Natalie Cole, Dionne Warwick, Celine Dion, Barbra Streisand, Melissa Ethridge, and Barry Manilow. www.ByronMotley.com