Non Collection artwork
On Saturday December 17, 2016, I tuned in to watch the legendary Bernard Hopkins box his last performance in what he called his retirement match. Win, lose or draw, B-Hop was adamant to hang up the gloves with a worthy opponent in Joe Smith Jr. I had followed Hopkins’ career since the Oscar De La Hoya fight and though he said he would not fight past 40 years old, here was Hopkins a month away from turning 51 putting an exclamation point on an illustrious career. In the end, Hopkins lost badly. A man who had never been knocked out in a 28 year career had to be, literally, knocked out the ring as a send-off in the finale. I thought back to historical fights such as when Rocky Marciano knocked Joe Louis out and thought I was watching an iconic moment in Real Time. There is a famous oil painting made by George Bellows of a boxing match where Luis Firpo knocks Jack Dempsey out of the ring in their 1923 clash. With pastels, I ended up combining Disney and Merrie Melody characters (with a cameo appearance by yours truly) with inspiration from Mr. Bellows painting to capture that historic December night in 2016.