Agnès Varda, Leading Light of French New Wave, Dies at 90

Agnès Varda, a leading light of the French New Wave who directed such films as “Cleo From 5 to 7,” “Vagabond” and “Faces Places,” has died. She was 90. Varda’s death from breast cancer at her Paris home was confirmed Friday by her family. “The filmmaker and artist Agnès Varda died from a cancer at […]

Variety

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Netflix has people (serenely) bulldozing their closets, and thrift stores are riding the wave

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A Series of Surreal Wave Prints Inspired By Jonathan Wilson’s Dreams

It might seem odd, growing up in Wisconsin and having rarely lived less than a few hours from the ocean that I should dream of waves, but there they are: a regular companion to my sleep.  I often think of them as my “frustrated surfing dreams” as usually, I find myself in front of some waves, but almost always something gets in the way of actually going out to surf: usually the lack of a board or the waves disappear, or I get distracted as the dream takes me off in another direction. A psychologist would probably have a field day with the meaning of these dreams, but for me, the more significant aspect is the waves and ocean themselves. Often the sense of place is so vivid and charged that these places and waves exist as a feeling in my body that I can recall days, weeks, even years later. And often the situations are surreal in unlikely ways: waves breaking in a narrow canal in a suburban neighborhood, on top of and down the side of a cliff of a large caldera, on top of a small set of bleachers in a field. A few weeks ago I found myself trying to surf inside a small living room filled with water. Usually, I never make it into the water, and if I do I rarely have a board, and if I do end up with a board it might end up being a floppy mess, or a rug, or piece of cardboard. I can count on one hand (missing a few fingers) the number of times I have actually found myself properly surfing in a dream and those dreams lived up to the lightness and grace one would expect from surfing without a physical body.

 

Hokusai's "The Great Wave off Kanagawa"
Hokusai’s “The Great Wave off Kanagawa”

 

Despite its overuse, I feel that Hokusai’s Great Wave off Kanagawa remains as one of the truly incredible images to grace humanity, and is a continuing inspiration to me as an artist, surfer, and lover of the ocean. Part of my motivation to create these images is to attempt to convey the power and grace of waves as Hokusai did. Considering the number of surfers and lovers of the ocean, I am sometimes surprised at the lack of good wave art. Also, surf art tends toward turquoise tubes and pink sunsets, which is one beautiful face of the ocean…

…but there is also the dark, moody side which deserves to be seen and learned from:  the mysterious energy of the ocean that comes to us at night like a living being, the element of water, the astral plane, la luna and the stirrings of our emotional being, the unstoppable tide of the feminine way.

 

Wave Dream #1
Wave Dream #1

 

With these dreams as my inspiration, I am undertaking a series of images to capture (if not the specifics of my dreams) the impact of the energy of the ocean in the astral plane: rolling, flowing, and surging in surreal and magnificent waves.

About the Prints

I am planning on creating a series of 10 images, two of which I have already completed.  I have chosen the medium of linoleum block printing with its bold, graphic darks and lights and elegant lines to conveys the power, grace, and mystery of the ocean.

These prints are all completely original and unique images inspired by my dreams.  I hand-carve the linoleum blocks and then hand-print them on Japanese mulberry washi paper.  Each image will be printed in a limited edition series of 200 prints, so that is all that will ever be printed.  They will be hand signed, editioned and stamped by me.  The image size is 8” x 10”, mat size: 13” x 15”, and outer frame dimensions about 14” x 16”.

 

Wave Dream #2
Wave Dream #2

 

Why Kickstarter?

At the basic level, my project will not be very difficult to accomplish—just some paper, ink, time, and elbow grease. What I really need is a little indication that the world might wants these images to come into being: to feel out if the surfing and larger wave-loving communities find enough pleasure in my surreal imaginings to support my efforts. I have set a modest goal of $ 700 which will 1) convince me that there is enough interest in my images to go through with the project and 2) provide me the startup cash needed to make the prints and either make or order custom-made frames.

And, as it turns out I will be moving back to Korea very soon, so it will be more difficult and expensive to make, sell, and ship these prints in the U.S., which makes this KickStarter test all the more important to convince me to go through with the full print series.

Thank you for visiting and considering my Kickstarter campaign.  I hope you enjoy my images.  I look forward to meeting you and trying to delight you with future images in this series.  Please share my campaign with anyone you know who loves the ocean and its waves.

Sincerely,

Jonathan Wilson

Risks and challenges

The only real challenge to completing this project is the fact that I will be moving to Korea mid-December. Getting them all printed before then will not be a problem, but framing and sending them out will be a bit more challenging. However, I have a few willing family members who can help me take care of that, so I don’t anticipate any real issue.

The other issue is that I was really hoping to get this campaign going in time for the holiday season for people that might want to give the gift of wave art to their favorite surfing loved-ones. I’m getting started quite late, but I still want to try to get them shipped out to supporters before Christmas. This is why I am running the campaign for a slightly short 21 days. However, it still might be difficult to get them to you by Christmas. Then the main issue will be that I plan to order custom-made frames and mats which may not arrive in time. But worst case scenario, you won’t have them by Christmas. Note: for orders outside the United States, I definitely won’t be able to get them to you before Christmas.

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Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker Wins Big Wave Tour Nazaré Challenge

WSL PRESS RELEASE

NAZARÉ, Portugal (Friday, November 16, 2018) – Two-time Big Wave Tour Champion Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker (ZAF) won the World Surf League (WSL) Big Wave Tour (BWT) Nazaré Challenge today in the incredible 25-to-40-foot surf at the infamous Portuguese big-wave venue of Praia do Norte, Nazaré.

The event launched early this morning in glassy conditions with 25-foot-plus wave-faces around the high tide mark and as the tide dropped conditions got heavier and heavier to culminate with large surf in the 35-to-40-foot range, with occasional larger sets. Mike Parsons, Big Wave Tour commissioner has granted this event a Silver coefficient, meaning results in Nazaré will carry a 10% increase in points (e.g. 11,000 points for the winner).

A relatively discrete surfer in the opening round and the Semifinal, advancing in third place in both heats, the South African from Durban peaked at the exact right time to pull off some of the most incredible drops and rides seen all day in Nazaré during the Final. The tall and powerful regular foot went both to his forehand and backhand in the Final to score an incredible 8.67 and 7.70 on his way to a first victory in Portugal.

Nazaré Challenge 2018
Grant Baker (ZAF) Winner of the Nazaré Challenge 2018

“I don’t believe it, this is insane,” Baker stated. “These kids were going so hard today and I can’t believe I’ve still got that in me. That 8.67 was the wave I’d been waiting for, it came right to me and I ended up being super late, it was a crazy big section. What a day, just perfect, perfect Nazaré, it’s a dream. Lucas (Chianca) was the man to beat and Natxo (Gonzalez) got that crazy barrel in the semis, somehow I got lucky and I got out on top!”

The 2013 and 2016 Big Wave Tour Champion, Baker has time and time again proven to be a threat in all conditions when the waves hit maximum heights. Today he came out on top of one of the best days of big wave professional surfing ever seen.

The Final got underway quickly with good rides from most surfers, but undoubtedly Lucas Chianca (BRA), the defending event champion in Nazaré, got the better of the early exchanges. The young Brasilian posted a 7.17 and 6.23 to take a strong lead early on and continued to play with the massive lefts he’d been dominating since early this morning. His ability to drop late into the steep walls impressed as he navigated some of the best waves of the day.

Baker answered with good lefts at first, going back up into the wall to score turns on the shoulders for his first two scores. He then switched to the rights, to pull two huge drops into shorter rides to continue to build momentum.

Natxo Gonzalez (EUK) waited 30 minutes to start on his first wave, but his patience paid off as he launched into one of the most critical rides of the Final to post an 8.17 and position himself in second position. João De Macedo (PRT), Russell Bierke (AUS) and Alex Botelho (PRT) had a slower start to their heat and kept chasing waves.

Gonzalez moved into the lead with a second left quickly after, but Baker replied with a huge wave on his backhand, threading the face in a perfect line to post an excellent 8.67 and move ahead of the Basque surfer, relegating Chianca to third. The Brasilian found an excellent wave of his own to move into second with an 8.07.

The last three surfers started getting better waves in the 6s and 7s to stay in fighting distance of the lead while Baker, Chianca and Gonzalez continued to surf their own heat. But as time ran out, the situation remained unchanged and Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker walked away with the win, closely followed by Chianca and Gonzalez. Botelho claimed fourth place, De Macedo fourth and Bierke fifth in his first-ever Big Wave Tour event.

In his second year on the Big Wave Tour, Lucas ‘Chumbo’ Chianca (BRA) dominated his first two heats to qualify for the Final, and score the second-best single score of the day, a near-perfect 9.60 for a backhand barrel in Semifinal 1. Unfortunately the Brasilian couldn’t quite find the same opportunities for massive scores in the Final heat and placed runner-up behind Baker.

“I’m super stoked but I didn’t fully accomplished what I came here to do,” Chianca said. “It was a perfect day and everyone was stoked to see these waves break. It’s a great way to start the season and I’m incredibly excited about the rest of the season. Twiggy is such a legend and a real idol I’ve looked up to when I was younger so to compete with these guys now I’m stoked.”

Third place finisher Natxo Gonzalez (EUK) had previously ridden the wave of his life in Semifinal 2, locking in a deep barrel with a high line on an impressive lefthander that came up abruptly next to the cliffs. The Basque surfer is building himself a solid profile on the big wave scene and will be one to watch as he takes on his first full season on the tour.

“After getting that 10 my day was pretty much over, I didn’t really care about anything else to be honest,” Gonzalez said. “I got one of the best waves of my life, in front of thousands of people including my friends and family so things don’t get much better than that.”

Competition reached a climactic high in the Semifinals as waves started opening up, giving surfers a rare opportunity to get barreled at Nazaré when the waves are that big. Portuguese surfer João De Macedo was the first to capitalize with an impressive 9.20, Chianca followed with a 9.60 and Gonzalez pulled off the impossible with his perfect 10 point ride in the following heat.

Last year’s Big Wave Tour Champion Billy Kemper (HAW) bowed out in Semifinal 1 alongside compatriots Nathan Florence (HAW) and Ian Walsh (HAW).

2018/2019 Nazaré Challenge Final Results:
1 – Grant Baker (ZAF) 25.04
2 – Lucas Chianca (BRA) 23.31
3 – Natxo Gonzalez (EUK) 22.71
4 – Alex Botelho (PRT) 22.06
5 – Joao De Macedo (PRT) 20.87
6 – Russell Bierke (AUS) 18.89

2018/2019 Nazaré Challenge Semifinal Results:
SF 1: Lucas Chianca (BRA) 25.63, João De Macedo (PRT) 25.40, Russell Bierke (AUS) 21.47, Nathan Florence (HAW) 20.76, Billy Kemper (HAW) 18.23, Ian Walsh (HAW) 18.00
SF 2: Alex Botelho (PRT) 26.33, Natxo Gonzalez (EUK) 26.03, Grant Baker (ZAF) 21.60, Kai Lenny (HAW) 20.33, Nick Lamb (USA) 14.00, Jamie Mitchell (AUS) 2.50

2018/2019 Nazaré Challenge Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Lucas Chianca (BRA) 22.31, Billy Kemper (HAW) 17.23, Nathan Florence (HAW) 16.91, Francisco Porcella (ITA) 14.63, Greg Long (USA) 13.77, Antonia Silva (PRT) 8.36
Heat 2: Ian Walsh (HAW) 24.34, Russell Bierke (AUS) 14.86, João De Macedo (PRT) 13.84, Tom Lowe (GBR) 12.16, Rodrigo Koxa (BRA) 9.36, Will Skudin (USA) 3.80
Heat 3: Jamie Mitchell (AUS) 19.57, Kai Lenny (HAW) 16.83, Natxo Gonzalez (EUK) 16.26, Jojo Roper (USA) 14.71, Pedro Calado (BRA) 14.20, Andrew Cotton (GBR) 13.73
Heat 4: Alex Botelho (PRT) 20.37, Nic Lamb (USA) 19.43, Grant Baker (ZAF) 18.13, Makuakai Rothman (HAW) 15.33, João Guedes (PRT) 10.16, Nic von Rupp (PRT) 9.70

The 2018/2019 Big Wave Tour hosts three events: the Nazaré Challenge, the Jaws Challenge, and the Mavericks Challenge. All holding periods for this season are now open and will await the biggest waves until the season’s close on March 31, 2019. For the Jaws Challenge and Mavericks Challenge, the world’s best male and female big wave surfers will await conditions that will produce waves in the 30-to-60-foot range. Once the decision is made to run the event, a “Green Alert” is issued and competitors will have 48 hours’ notice to be ready to compete.

The WSL Big Wave Tour is proudly supported by Surfline, and Corona, with a special thanks to Nazaré Challenge partners Jogos Santa Casa, Visit Portugal, Portuguese Waves, The City of Nazaré, MEO, Hertz, and Praia do Norte.

For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.

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Big Wave Surf Film | White Rhino Starring Bruce Irons, Nathan Fletcher and Mark Healey

A parallel story from the big wave surfers and photographers who witnessed the largest surf ever seen. This story is based on one photographer’s journey to capture the wave of a lifetime. In pursuit, three epic swells hit the South Pacific shorelines, providing conditions only madmen could dream of. Hear the story behind these historical days from the men themselves who dared to challenge the ‘White Rhino’.

For more information on the film check out their website here.

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Save The Waves Announces Global Contest, The “Dirty Wave Challenge”

SAVE THE WAVES TO HOST THE DIRTY WAVE CHALLENGE THROUGH ENDANGERED WAVES APP

Global contest to identify and clean the dirtiest surf location.

Davenport, Calif., (October 20th, 2018) – Save the Waves Coalition is proud to announce the launch of the Dirty Wave Challenge, a cash prize and a five thousand dollar stewardship fund that will be awarded to the dirtiest and trashiest surf ecosystem identified on the organization’s Endangered Waves App. The challenge opens October 20th, 2018 and closes on November 20th, 2018.

Launched in early 2018, the new smartphone App empowers surfers and beachgoers to monitor the world’s coastlines and surf ecosystems. Winner of best conservation mobile app in the HeroX competition by XPRIZE, the Endangered Waves App is available for iOS and Android devices.

The Dirty Wave Challenge is simple: capture a photo of the dirtiest and trashiest surf ecosystem, upload it to the app, and the winning photo will receive a cash prize and a day of stewardship with Save The Waves and partners to clean it up.

“There are approximately 31 million surfers worldwide, and they are the front line for our coastlines for climate change, trash, sewage, and other issues. Imagine if this entire community was mobilized to track and report coastal threats,” said Save The Waves Executive Director, Nik Strong-Cvetich.

The goal is to collect data and mobilize beachgoers and the surfing community around the key issues facing our coastlines, with this first challenge focusing on marine debris. Save The Waves Coalition plans to use the photos and data collected to better track and prioritize coastal threats, educate users, and share with coastal agencies and partners to take action worldwide.

“The Dirty Wave Challenge will help us fill the gaps in much needed coastal data and broaden our stewardship reach,” said Strong-Cvetich.

To Enter the Dirty Wave Challenge:

  1. Download the Endangered Waves Mobile App: www.savethewaves.org/mobileapp

  2. Using the App, take a picture of a surf ecosystem trashed with garbage, plastic or marine debris and use a common item for scale such as a person, a surfboard, your hand, etc.

  3. Select the Dirty Wave Challenge entry button, write a brief description, select your location, enter an email address, and submit.

  4. Share your submission on social media with the #dirtywavechallenge

  5. Each participant is only allowed 1 entry per challenge, but please have multiple photos of the issues available to validate entry.

 

The Dirty Wave Challenge is proudly supported by MJD Interactive, WSL Pure, and XPRIZE.

 

About Save The Waves Coalition

Save The Waves Coalition protects and preserves the coastal environment with a focus on the surf zone, through a unique combination of protected areas, economics, and direct action. See more at www.savethewaves.org

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House Democrats’ hope for wave election diminishes as Republicans rebound

Democrats retain their strength in suburban areas, but Trump’s rising approval and the fight over Kavanaugh are boosting GOP candidates in conservative and rural districts.
Politics

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