Surfboard: Fluid Form

Where turbulence barrels in sets to the shoreline. Where windswept, mutable surfaces become charged by a rhythmic pulse. That is where I go and where I have returned to for more than twenty years. And it is where, ultimately, I discovered surfers. What began as a search for an emotional landscape, or a blank screen for contemplation, organically evolved into a fourteen-year project of photographing surfers with their surfboards at the water’s edge. My pictures address how we observe, relate to, and interact with the earth’s oceans, which cover more than 71 percent of its surface and are extremely threatened by climate change and its accompanying effects. Through portraiture and still life, I attempt to discern how the individual navigates these waters that impact us, connect us, and also keep us apart. 

In my current work, I am exploring and conceptualizing the dynamic meaning of the common, utilitarian surfboard that has been used for centuries. Through these objects, I am telling a story of the history of surfing. Though my subject matter is not overtly political, it is nonetheless a revelation of historical events. Surfboards are the carriers of multiple messages, emblematic of the race and culture clashes that continue to happen both in the waves and on shorelines, and offering a more complex interpretation of the ocean and humanity.