Filed under: Photography, Teenie Harris Archive, What's New
Photographer Charles “Teenie” Harris was a well-known athlete in his youth long before he earned his moniker of “One Shot.” In the first half of the 1920s, along with Bill Harris (no relation), he founded the Pittsburgh Crawfords baseball team that would become a Negro League powerhouse. Around the same time, he was developing a reputation as an ace dribbler and fast player on the basketball court, and later as a well-respected team manager and coach. The Pittsburgh Courier newspaper would report weekly details of his actions in the game.
Among the first teams Harris gained his reputation was as captain on the Paramount A. C. basketball team that played in the 1926 city championship. Through the 1920s and early 1930s he played intermittently for the team, including brief stints on rival teams including Holy Cross and Loendi. Paramount A. C. later became the Hotel Bailey Big Five team in whose uniform he’s captured in this image by an unknown photographer:
Copy of a c. 1929–1931 photograph of Charles “Teenie” Harris in Hotel Bailey basketball uniform, with basketball on floor, in studio setting, copy created by Harris c. 1950–1970, Heinz Family Fund
In 1934, he extended his coaching skills to the local Savoy women’s basketball team whose games were described as “fast-paced.” Also at this time, when Harris was in his mid-20s, his career was at its peak with the Iron City Elks team. Chester Washington, in his sports column for the Pittsburgh Courier on March 28, 1936, describes Harris as:
“…the deceptive little scooter and dribbler, a former Paramount A. C. speedster who is not only a sterling little runner if the race grows hot and needs him, but together with Harry Beale handles the managerial reins of the antlered ponies.”
The Iron City Elks completed against teams from the greater western Pennsylvania region, east coast, and fraternities and colleges such as Wilberforce. Through his managerial skills, he was able to bring the New York Renaissance and Celtics teams to play in Pittsburgh. According to his son, Charles A. “Little Teenie” Harris:
“The greatest achievement my dad felt that he had was bringing to Pittsburgh the two best basketball teams in the world from New York—the Renaissance and the Celtics. He never looked forward to a basketball game as much as he did when the Rens came to town.”
Harris began to get serious about photography in late 1937 and began publishing his images in Washington DC based Flash Newspicture Magazine in 1938. Consequently, he named his next basketball team “Flash.” On February 10, 1938, the New York Renaissance came to Pittsburgh to play the Pittsburgh Pirates basketball team and two days later they played Flash. Flash lost to the New York Renaissance at the Centre Avenue YMCA.
Charles “Teenie” Harris, Group portrait of Flash basketball team, possibly including Charles “Teenie” Harris squatting on left, #2 Red Dorman, and #1 Charley Heard, February 1938, Heinz Family Fund
Shortly thereafter he increasingly turned his attention to coaching, including the Centre Avenue YMCA team, and formed a recreational team made up of former professional and college players named “The Old Timers” a few years later.
Atrributed to Charles “Teenie” Harris, Centre Avenue YMCA basketball team wearing “Pitt Y” jerseys, possibly including Red Dorman standing third from left, and coach Charles “Teenie” Harris standing on left, in Centre Avenue YMCA, January 1939, Heinz Family Fund
His love of the sport and admiration for the New York Renaissance was passed on to his son. “Little Teenie” formed and captained his own teams which he named “The Rens,” and played on school teams as well.
Charles “Teenie” Harris, Centre Avenue YMCA Rens basketball team, standing from left: Jesse Bell, Henry Payne, Frank Enty, Jesse Demus, John Cannon; kneeling: Charles A. “Little Teenie” Harris, Vernon Davis, and Robert Moulden, in Centre Avenue YMCA, February 1945, Heinz Family Fund
In 1946, father and son played against each other in what his son humbly described as “basketball 101,” since the youth were so instructed (and beaten 34–22) by their elders.
Teenie’s basketball career declined by the 1950s, when his Old Timer’s team was referred by the Courier as the “’Real’ Old-timers… held together by ankle wraps and lineament.”
Come see the changes!
Meet in Museum of Art lobby. Members will receive invitations via email. Two-week advance reservation is required. Call 412.622.3314.
Bring your playful streak, and celebrate the Month of the Young Child—a time to recognize the importance of quality early learning experiences for all children—with a fun-filled day of exploration and participatory activities for kids and families inside and outside the Carnegie Museums and Carnegie Library in Oakland!
Have some creative fun with the Imagination Playground, a mobile system of blue blocks in a variety of shapes and sizes that will be set up for the day. Be among the first to climb in and on the “Lozziwurm” play structure recently installed among the trees near the main entrance of the museums at Forbes Avenue and S. Craig Street. The Lozziwurm is a colorful, twisting, tubular play structure designed by Swiss artist Yvan Pestalozzi in 1972. Beginning April 27, it will be available for free play during the museum’s regular open hours. The Lozziwurm is one of several projects leading up to Carnegie Museum of Art’s 2013 Carnegie International exhibition, which opens October 5, 2013. Play Day and the Lozziwurm signal the importance of play as the foundation of thinking, making, and experimentation, a key animating concept of the 2013 Carnegie International. Presented by Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, and PAEYC. Kids ages 12 and under are free!
Sponsored by TEIS Early Intervention Provider
From preschool to high school
When I’m not working on CMOA’s Kids and Family Programs, I’ve been working on my own art and technology endeavor, The App Expo, with fellow artist Ashley Andrews. This weekend, we teamed up with Google programmer and fellow artist, Ciarán Ó Conaire and entered the first ever Steel City Codefest, a 24-hour app making competition at Google’s Bakery Square offices. The competition was presented cooperatively by the City of Pittsburgh, The Urban Redevelopment Authority, Google, and others, and it was attended by 100 local programmers, developers, and designers. The challenge: To use newly available community-based data provided by the mayor’s office to create an app that benefits the community at large… in 24 hours!
Watch the video on post-gazette.com
We used nearly all of those hours and felt weary by Sunday morning’s judging session but successfully completed and presented our app called Whoa, Buddy! With the concept of community-building in mind, we designed Whoa, Buddy! to promote “IRL” interactions and responsible use of social media through funny pop-up messages, which psychologically nudge users to reconsider their social media posts in favor of live social interactions and community activities (like visiting CMOA, for instance).
I’m happy to report (and brag) that we were awarded a notable mention as well as the judge’s commendation for artistic merit. We also built an enormous paper Commodore 64 (below) on which to “run” our app (via projector).
If you’re a coder, programmer, designer, or artist, I highly recommend this sure-to-become-annual Pittsburgh event. As for Whoa, Buddy!, a downloadable version of our app will be available for Android devices soon. Whoa, Buddy! will also be presented at future iterations of our ongoing exhibition series, The App Expo.
The app prompts users with warnings such as “Are you sure you want to post this to the World Wide Web?”
Filed under: Decorative Arts & Design, Uncategorized, What's New
That mailbox. Oh man, that mailbox! If you’ve seen the mailbox that came hanging by my front door when we bought our house in Pittsburgh, you’d understand. Black-painted steel, with a bent newspaper rack and weird plastic emblem, I had to chip the former owner’s name and two sets of house numbers off of it with a razor blade. And it’s still there, three years later, because I haven’t found the right replacement. I hadn’t encountered “my” mailbox yet. Until the opening of Inventing the Modern World, anyway.
Designed by Paul Hankar for the 1897 Exposition Internationale de Bruxelles, it was designed to showcase materials drawn from Belgium’s colony in the Congo, in this case, mahogany, rosewood, and ivory, along with wrought iron and steel. Belgium’s activities in the Congo were terrible and exploitative. Here, however, we see African influence into Art Nouveau. It pushes all of my buttons. Brussels is one of my favorite cities to wander in—with curvy, organic wrought iron forms from this period on seemingly every balcony of every building. On Hankar’s mailbox, the ivory inlay and wrought iron has a similar feel, but the whole thing is very stately. Much more so than my banged-up, peeling steel shoebox.
Paul Hankar, designer, Belgian, 1859–1901. Mailbox, ca. 1897. Mahogany and rosewood with ivory, wrought iron and steel. The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri, Purchase: William Rockhill Nelson Trust (by exchange), 2011.41.
It will never be mine, alas. I couldn’t afford it, and could you imagine what would happen in the winter?
Inventing the Modern World closes this Sunday, February 24!
White Cube, Green Maze: New Art Landscapes has traveled from the Carnegie to Yale School of Architecture where it is on view through May 4. I was delighted to discover this banner (below) prominently displayed on the School’s exterior at the intersection of York Street and Chapel Street in downtown New Haven. The banner uses an aerial view by photographer Iwan Baan of a key project in the exhibition: Tadao Ando’s Chichu Art Museum on the Japanese island of Naoshima. Special thanks to Dean Robert Stern for bringing the exhibition from Pittsburgh to Yale and to Brian Butterfield for coordinating its installation in that remarkably different space.
Inaugurated in 1963, the Yale Art + Architecture Building was designed by Paul Rudolph, then Chair of the Architecture department. It is one of the most inspirational yet controversial buildings of that era, with a blunt exterior of bush-hammered concrete and lateral expanses of glass, and with a complex interior containing multiple levels or “trays.” The building was damaged by a mysterious fire in 1969 at the height of political unrest and the simultaneous flickerings of postmodernism. This tough, iconic structure, now known as Paul Rudolph Hall, has recently been elegantly restored and adapted to contemporary code and environmental requirements.
Among the twenty objects from our permanent collection now on view in the Heinz Architectural Center’s anniversary show, 20/20, the perspective below by Rudolph depicts the Yale Art + Architecture Building on its corner site. Inspired by both Frank Lloyd Wright and the Baroque, Rudolph (1918–1997) was a formidable draughtsman. In this ink perspective with cellophane overlays, we see the interplay of robust vertical and horizontal elements. The former contain services, elevators and stairs and physically hold the entire structure in place. The latter house open studios, office “trays”…and the gallery currently hosting White Cube, Green Maze.
Paul Rudolph, University; “Yale Art and Architecture Building,” New Haven, CT; [exterior perspective], c. 1958–1962, ink on card with cellophane overlays, Purchase: gift of Henry J. and Drue Heinz Foundation
Filed under: Architecture, Behind the Scenes, What's New
This past Saturday, five teams of local architects and bakers competed for the title of “Master CAKEitect” to mark the opening of 20/20: Celebrating Two Decades of the Heinz Architectural Center.
The teams wowed everyone with their edible versions of iconic architecture from Pittsburgh and around the globe. Guest judges Virginia Montanez (aka PittGirl), Charles Rosenblum, and Jason Roth rated each cake on aesthetics, taste, and architectural integrity.
And the awards were…….
Visitors were also invited to cast their vote for their favorite CAKEitecture with Monopoly money and buildings.
The winner of the People’s Choice Master CAKEitect award was Young Architects Forum and Dozen Bake Shop:
Congratulations to Loysen + Kreuthmeier Architects, Prantl’s Bakery, Young Architects Forum and Dozen Bake Shop, Pittsburgh’s 2013 Master CAKEitects! The winning teams were awarded a trophy and an exclusive, behind-the-scenes museum tour with Heinz Architectural Center curator Tracy Myers.
Parkhurst Dining Service’s executive pastry chef Alice Leich joined in the celebration with a birthday cake depicting HAC.
Visitors examine a model of the Yokohama International Port Terminal by Foreign Office Architects in 20/20
A monumental thank you to all participants for sharing your confectionary creations with CMOA and the community—we’re in awe of your talent (and incredibly full)! You made CAKEitecture one of the museum’s best attended events, attracting 2,500+ Pittsburghers!
These cakes never stood a chance.
Check out these shout-outs:
We hope to see you all at the museum’s next exciting event, the Oh Snap! Launch Party (Thursday, Feb. 21).