Five Versus Five: Basketball Hoops on the South Side of Chicago
Five Versus Five focuses on the players who reside on the South Side by examining the courts on which they play.
South Siders have endured decades of both de facto and de jure segregation as well as public and private divestment. As a result, the area is an island of ethnic isolation and financial deficit.
The courts where South Siders play serve as an easy metaphor for the adversity and creativity that limited resources can breed. In privileged neighborhoods and popular consciousness, basketball hoops are gleaming posts and nets, regulation courts and even stadiums. But these established basketball courts are only one portion of the story. On the South Side, hoops are improvised in alleys, streets, derelict lots and other non-traditional settings. Given their proximity to home, these sites are important not only as places of play, but also as local meeting places. Consequently, they are as important, if not more important, as conventional venues.
So as to immerse the viewer, the depth of field in these photos has been altered to isolate the hoop. In this way, we become a part of the game and are drawn into the struggles of its players.