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Original Issue

Passion in a Cold Climate

Artist Bob Stanley went out to see ice hockey and was stirred by its speed and violence. The contrast between "the coldness, the transparency" of the ice and the heated human conflict above it intrigued him. He took photographs on which to base a series of paintings. But he discovered that acrylics on canvas would not give back the emotions he put into them. He began to experiment. Discarding the tools that have earned him an international reputation and a place in museums and private collections, he projected images from film transparencies onto large sheets of Plexiglas, and then transferred them by a special silk-screen method. On the following pages, casting their shadows on the mirror of Stanley's imagination, are his visions of hockey: the eternal struggling along the boards to dig out the puck and put it back into play ("They are fighting for the puck," says Stanley, "but really fighting each other"); the sudden crash to the ice of a figure in red—who can stand for all puck carriers—along with his blue-garbed harrier; the supreme concentration of attacker and goalkeeper.

In addition to the action, I see symbolic things," Bob Stanley Says. "The mask of the goalkeeper, hiding his expression, always reminds me of a death mask."