Tracie Speca-Ventura, Sports & The Arts
Tracie Speca-Ventura walked by an art gallery with sports exhibits in 1989 in Sherman Oaks, Calif. She was 19.
“I thought, this is super cool. There was a help wanted sign,” she said. “I went in and said I didn’t know anything about art, but I know a lot about sports and know how to sell.”
Speca-Ventura had just spent a summer serving as an assistant to Pete Rose and his family when he managed the Cincinnati Reds. Speca-Ventura’s father, Lee Speca, was Rose’s minor league roommate in 1961.
She got the job at that gallery, and in her first month organized art shows for the Los Angeles Kings featuring Wayne Gretzky and Mickey Mantle.
By 1992, she founded Sports & The Arts and is now a top art curator working with sports teams and their venues on art and historical collections, including at Yankee Stadium, Lambeau Field, Levi’s Stadium and U.S. Bank Stadium.
“No one was doing this. No one does this on our scale,” Speca-Ventura said of the California-based company.
The firm is assisting the Milwaukee Bucks with artwork at Fiserv Forum and is talking to the Los Angeles Rams, Oakland Raiders and Golden State Warriors regarding their new venues.
“We have employed now over 250 artists,” she said. “There are probably 300 to 400 kids who have worked on our projects from art schools and universities.”
— Mike Sunnucks