Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

, Sports Notebook

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

, Sports Notebook

Article excerpt

The Art of Miniature Golf; Nordiques Tumble Into Denver ART museums have found a surprising ally in attracting a wider public - miniature golf. By creating golf holes that are works of art, museums and galleries around the United States have incorporated a fun, interactive element with strong family appeal. That is apparent at the DeCordova Museum in Lincoln, Mass., where a quiet gallery has come to life with youngsters and curious adults. Upon completing the DeCordova's 18-hole "Strokes of Genius" course created by area artists, Helen Citron Boodman, a refined suburbanite from nearby Lexington, says, "I haven't played miniature golf in 20 years or so, but this is impressive artistically and a lot of fun to play. I'm bringing my 16-year-old grandson back." Michael Sockol, a museum spokesman, says the course is "a sneaky way to introduce children and adults to contemporary art." While some of the works are whimsical, he says, none are pop ploys. "Kitsch is shooting a ball through Abraham Lincoln's mouth. This is not kitsch," he says. Each hole has a title, and some address such issues as race relations, immigration, and even domestic violence. A sampling: *Feral Golf has geese sending an environmental message with their brooding presence. *Or Current Resident sets off a paper storm of junk mail inside a translucent house each time a ball is putted through the doorway. *Passport, Please uses a rotating fan to block entrance to a castlelike embassy, forcing consideration of other routes to US entry. In a sense, the game has come full circle with a trend toward miniature courses that look like real ones. It's a look that Skip Laun, executive director of the Miniature Golf Association of America, calls, "Honey, I shrunk the course." The new courses have adopted a natural look, with water hazards, sand traps, and undulating greens. They are often much longer and more challenging than theme-type courses. In the 1920s and '30s, miniature golf in America started as a short game of regular golf. …
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