Talk about a “win” at the right “place.” The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame will unveil its inaugural “Photo Finish” photography exhibit on Sunday, January 20, in the Museum’s von Stade Gallery. The show of horse-themed images marks the museum’s first juried photography exhibition in more than a decade, and will feature 45 photos by 33 photographers from across the US and Canada.
Victoria Reisman, Curator at the Museum of Racing, says the popularity of the last juried photography series—”Winning Colors,” which ran through 2004—was a big reason why the museum decided to try the concept again. The name “Winning Colors” was switched to “Photo Finish” to coincide with the museum’s annual backstretch photography tours of the same name. ‘There was an interest in bringing [“Winning Colors”] back, especially among the participants of our ‘Photo Finish’ photography tours,” says Reisman. “So we made a plan to reintroduce it into our schedule to see what the response would be.”
Last August, the Museum of Racing announced a call for submissions, the only requirement being that each submitted photo have some relation to the sport of American Thoroughbred racing. The museum ended up with 159 submissions. From this group, a panel of judges comprised of experts and professionals from the Saratoga arts and racing communities selected 45 photos. Reisman is impressed with the final collection. “The exhibition features a good mixture of both amateur and professional photographers,” she says. “It’s interesting to see how everyone interpreted the theme.”
After the exhibition’s opening this Sunday, the photographs displayed in the von Stade gallery will also be viewable on the museum’s website, in addition to 26 online-only photos. In all, “Photo Finish” represents 59 photographers from 15 states and one Canadian province. The exhibition will be open to the public through Saturday, March 9. Admission to the Museum of Racing is $10 for adults and $5 for students. Seniors (55 and older), museum members and children under 5 get in for free.