Friday, 27 June 2008

Roxy Jam Biarritz

Finally, Roxy has uploaded the information on the 2008 Roxy Jam in Biarritz. With the perfect combination of art, music and some of the most stylish longboard surfers in the world, the festival is going to be awesome.

The Roxy Jam will take place between 11 and 16 July in and around Biarritz in South West France.

Check out all the info at

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Finisterre & Observer Ethical Awards = Cornish Gold

I'm a bit behind the curve on this news but I couldn't not give it a mention. Earlier this month Finisterre , the Cornish surf culture company, won the Observer Ethical Award for Ethical Business of the Year. Fantastic recognition for the hard work and real commitment the guys have given to founding and successfully running an ethical, sustainable, inspiring and individual company.

Here's why the judges awarded Finisterre with the Gold...

We're not into the whole corporate culture or in a rush to achieve super-aggressive sales targets,' says Finisterre founder Tom Kay, who set up the winning ethical surf-wear brand six years ago with a Prince's Trust grant. To be honest, his corporate disclaimer is superfluous once you visit the three Finisterre idealists who run the brand from their surfer caravans in St Agnes, Cornwall.

This is clearly no normal fashion label. In fact, it's all about 'testing convention', from the way they (very efficiently) run their mail order through the tiny local post office, shun cheap fabrics in favour of renewable or recyclable fibres, and have pulled out of China ('That would be considered commercial suicide for most sportswear brands,' says marketing man Ernie Capbert) in favour of working with nuns in Colombia and a women's outreach project.

Our panellist eco-designer Max McMurdo appreciated the way the brand had resisted the temptation to go too high end, as so many ethical labels do, and admired the way Finisterre refused to 'distance itself from the high street' but instead normalised ethical production. The design is not bad either. GQ magazine declared the Finisterre Anabatic shell jacket one of the '100 Best Things Right Now' last year. Now we declare it an ethical winner.

Go here to see the award video and find out more.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Sustainability in Surfing

Having bowled up to the Eden Project more than a couple of times it’s always good to have a reason to visit the giant biomes other than to see if the Titan arum (aka the stinking flower) has bloomed to exceed the previous year’s heady heights of 164 cm or whatever its current record is.

Last week saw the opening of a new exhibition highlighting sustainability in surfing which showcases the striking artwork of Ben Cook whilst raising awareness of the murkier side of the sport that’s inherent in the many surf-related objects that are non bio-degradable and toxic.

The main focus of the exhibition is an original VW Westfalia camper with surfboards and wetsuits trailing out of the back, based on a 1969 installation by Joseph Beuyes’s that explored human survival in the face of technological failure. The original work had 24 sleds falling from the rear of a camper van with each sled having a roll of fat strapped to it for warmth, a lump of animal fat for energy and a torch for direction.

Ben has swapped the sled for surfboards, the felt for wetsuits, the animal fat for surf wax and the original flashlights have been replaced with tide tables to represent survival and direction. In addition to The Pack 2008 you can also view further exhibits in The Core where groundbreaking sustainable materials being developed by Cornish companies such as Homeblown Surfboards and Sustainable Composites, have been used to create wall-based abstract ‘landscape paintings’.

In an interview with the utterly brilliant Stranger magazine Ben Cook said: “I want to raise awareness of ecological issues relevant to the surfing community through my work.” The whole exhibition highlights the serious environmental consequences of surfing becoming an increasing popular leisure activity across the world in the 21st century.

The exhibition runs at The Eden Project. until September 4 and Ben's stylish eco-friendly landscape paintings are available to purchase.

Friday, 13 June 2008

David Lloyd

Backside Rip Tide

Came across the artwork of David Lloyd earlier this week and really like photograph painting combinations on his website. The image here is one of my favourites but Solar Arch and Blue Green Surf Girl are also stunners.

Stay away from surfing themes in your art, said the gallery people, because it won't be good for your career. So, at first, David Lloyd avoided images of waves and beaches and became well known in the art world for his complex, vibrant, and enigmatic abstractions. But the more he denied the impulse to explore the activity that has most colored his life, the stronger it became. He began to create surf paintings quietly, on the side, with devotion.

Lloyd believes anyone who surfs should be involved in design and has a number of bizarre-looking boards to record his journey. Lloyd admits that to search endlessly is better than to find. He relishes the longing for waves that may not even exist. It is that longing that lights his imagination ablaze to paint the parade of moments and days from the fiery ocean.

Lloyd's work evokes the memories that all surfers have stored up inside. They remind us of daydreams and of waves that might someday be, "Deep in your head there is this place, and it's not Huntington Pier," he says. “Surfers live in longing for that moment, they relish the anticipation. But arriving there is never as good as you picture it. Eventually, your memory mixes up all these snapshots of the best days and they all become part of this inner place." Anticipation and memory, those long-lived impressions flanking the instantaneous rush of a wave, are paramount.

Monday, 9 June 2008

Three Exhibition at LCB

(C) Kate Czuczman

Opening on 25 June, the LCB surf shop in London's Brick Lane will host an exhibition of surf photography by three of the UK's top female foam snappers. Lucia Griggi, Kate Czuczman and Mel Enright met through shared friends and projects whilst surfing. Bonded by their desire to travel and surf and a love for one another's work they have collaborated on this exhibition that contrasts their different photographic journeys through a shared surfing experience.

Each of the three photographers will display their own distinctive style and medium to document the same surf subject matter, demonstrating how the one location can be seen in such contrast through different eyes.

Lucia is one of the very few female professional surf photographers in the UK and her work regualrly graves the pages of all the main British surfing magazines. Lucia takes pictures that capture "different facets of the surfing lifestyle" and this exhibition will also feature some of her images laminated onto surfboards and 'other' objects. Kate founded the surf travel company Big Friday with whom she has travelled around the world. Along the way she picked up an insatiable thirst for old skool cameras and different film formats. Mel first started documenting her travels on a six-month surfing sabbatical five years ago and is most interested in the powerful natural beauty of the surfing sea, landscape and people; the play of light, bold colour and pattern.

The show runs from 25 June through to 14 August

Friday, 6 June 2008

Yearning for the Shortstraw

I really love the vibe of this art-based surf wear brand. Co-founded by Jim Mitchell, Sam Coombes and Ben Waters these guys take their inspiration from "pre-war Hawaii and its original innovators, 50’s and 60’s California and its smooth stylemasters, the wild trailblazers of Australia in the late 60’s and 70’s, through to the present free-thinking watermen who embody a new time of openness, reverence and genuine stoke for difference and variety."

Shortstraw offers a refreshing approach to surf wear that embraces the original concept of the sport - the joy of foam dancing. They've only been going a couple of years but came from the stables of Mambo and so, with a combination of talent and experience, Shortstraw has already won over some of the most influential stockists in their native Australia and in the States. Great website, great brand, awesome threads but one request... please can you roll out some gear for the girls?

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Beach Polo Anyone?

Billed as "the ultimate culture clash," Polo on the Beach returns to Cornwall this September. Last year the event was held for the first time on a UK beach at Watergate Bay and the tongue in cheek press release promises that upon its return in 2008 "sunbleached surfers will rub shoulders with the thoroughbred set in the late summer's evening of saltwater adrenaline."

Interesting... it's a free event and might be worth a look, if only to see how well cocktail dresses and stillettos translate onto a wet and windy Cornish beach where "turf meets surf."

Sunday, 1 June 2008

UK dates for The Happening

The Happening Live has added an extra date to its world tour. Arriving in London on 1 July the first show takes place at The Village Underground in Shoreditch then rolls into Cornwall on the 4 July for another evening at The Sandsifter in Godrevy, Cornwall. Tickets are available through See for £18 for the Cornwall night and £16 for the London gig. Can't wait...

Roxy posted a new video from the Tokyo event on YouTube... Check it out.