ARTIST STATEMENT FOR PING-PONG DIPLOMACY :
Ping-Pong Diplomacy is a term that was coined in the early 1970s when the US Ping-Pong team, along with a handful of journalists, was invited to visit China. They were to become the first American delegation to set foot in Beijing since 1949. This visit signaled the first thawing of US-China relations and paved the way for President Nixon’s historic trip the following year. Ping-Pong became "an apt metaphor for the relations between Washington and Peking noted Time magazine, as each nation signaled, in turn, its openness to change”.
The sport’s ability to transcend divides continues today through rotating games of Ping-Pong in a park in New York City. Daily, around lunchtime, a diverse group of men gather together with respect, humor, and friendship to engage in a bit of fierce yet affable competition. Ping-Pong Diplomacy seeks to give a visual voice to these men and honor the assorted relationships the game creates. Please click on an image to see it full size.