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Vamos Rafa!

Artist Bruce Sulzberg's 3D painting of Nadal at Roland Garros.
Artist Bruce Sulzberg's 3D painting of Nadal at Roland Garros.

By Sebastian Nunez

In a year tennis fans expected to see stars of the next generation making statements and winning titles, it would be the 35-year-old Rafael Nadal who would have a record-setting start to 2022. The Spaniard won the Australian open and had his best start to any year of his illustrious career, winning his first 20 matches before falling to the American Taylor Fritz in the Indian Wells Final.

Despite rising to No. 1 in the world numerous times and breaking the grand slam record for 21 titles, he has remained committed to the Rafa Nadal Foundation, his charitable organization that has improved the lives of children through the wonderful sport of tennis. He helps kids with intellectual disabilities in Spain and India while preaching his motto of study and play. This year at the Atlanta Open, fans will have a unique opportunity to support his foundation, along with a few other venerable causes.

In collaboration with artist Bruce Sulzberg, a 3D painting of Nadal was created using an action photo from his most dominant court in tennis, Court Phillipe Chatrier at Roland Garros. Sulzberg spent years developing and perfecting his 3D painting technique and uses his gift to paint different athletes like the King of Clay. Being a former junior and college tennis player, he understands tennis; it allows him to create such a detailed portrait of the tennis legend. There are a limited number of these paintings and one is on display in Atlanta at LM Frame and Gallery on Johnson Ferry Road. Christophe Choquart, the curator of the exhibit, always supports artists and local initiatives, and has helped to promote the sport of tennis through this painting.

At the 2022 Atlanta Open the painting will be displayed during the week for spectators. A silent auction will be hosted as well, which will see its proceeds go to the Rafa Nadal Foundation and former pro Tim Siegel’s Team Luke Hope for Minds, which supports families with brain injured children. Don’t miss the opportunity to see this incredible artwork up close and come by to bid for a chance to take home one of the best tennis masterpieces ever created.

“Being associated with Rafa’s Foundation through the Arts is of great pride and appreciation. We at LM Gallery are delighted to share our custom framing expertise to enhance Bruce’s exceptional 3D work,” said Choquart.

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