THWACK! is a 7x5 work on paper. It appropriates a vintage Japanese menko card which has been blown up, colored with prismacolor markers, paint pen, and pen. THWACK was added and the repurposed card was mounted on a background suggesting Japan's flag of the era.
The menko cards appeal to me because of their pop art graphics. Menkos, popular since the early Edo period, were first round and printed on cardboard. They were used to play a game similar to flipping baseball cards, or modern day pogs. An American school teacher introduced baseball to Japan in 1872 and baseball menkos followed. It's believed the first Japanese baseball menko was produced in 1897. It was round and showed a player with his hands over his head to catch a ball. By 1920 menkos were usually rectangular, smaller than American baseball cards, and had a drawing rather than a photo of the player who was either professional or from a prominent university.
Thwack was first heard around the end of the 16th century. And is heard still in the 21st. Here, for example, is an extract from May Swenson's poem Analysis of Baseball.
Ball goes out (thwack)
It's about the ball, the bat, the mitt, the bases and the fans.
It's done on a diamond.
And for fun.
It's about home
And it's about run.