Navigating Dreams On A Skateboard

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Javier Mendizabal, frontside ollie. Photo: Sem Rubio.

Dreams have an uncanny feel; they incorporate the materials of daily life to sometimes bizarre, beautiful or unsettling effect.  “Cuatro Sueños Pequeños” (translated into English the title means “The Four Small Dreams”) is a skateboard film directed by Thomas Campbell.  The film uses the conceit of skateboarders navigating a dream world, one that feels distinctly different from the digital deluge of images and video of skateboarding uploaded everyday.

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The distinctive feeling was achieved through using 16mm film instead of video, which while technically much more cumbersome lends the film a uniquely beautiful atmosphere. Exposures are not always perfect and colors wash in and out, but Campbell embraces the chance happenings and limitations of film, utilizing it to create the warm dreamlike aesthetic.

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Metropol Parasol by Jürgen Mayer H. Architeckten. Seville, Spain via Architectural Review

Photo: Paul Raftery

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Not only is the film gorgeous the skateboarding is not bad either.  Unique spots throughout Spain and Europe are used, and it was delightful to see Jurgen Mayer’s “Seville Parasol” utilized for illicit athletic endeavors.  Mayer is an architect that seems to at times be designing a skatepark without knowing it.

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Images via Umyeaharts

Hewing to the overall handmade aesthetic of the film “Cuatro Sueños Pequeños” is available as a gorgeous physical object.  The DVD comes in a 90-page book complete with 14 pages illustrated by artist Nathaniel Russell.  The book also contains images taken during the filming of the movie.  There is also a digital download available at itunes if amazing, well thought out book design, art, and photography aren’t your thing.

Sculpture For Skateboarding

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Traditionally, skateboarding parks are separated from the general public—the skateboarders are relegated to their concrete area, the metal fences a boundary between them and the rest of the city. However, most skateboarders don’t desire this sequestration, no matter how great the park is. Skateboarders want the freedom to take their four wheels and plywood planks where they want, when they want.

Read the complete article at Architizer here.

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 Photos: RedBullContentPool 

FDR Skatepark: Philadelphia Skateboarders DIY Urban Renewal

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Photo: Phil Jackson via “FDR Skatepark: A Visual History”

There has been a shift in recent years in the way cities look at redeveloping the urban environment. Rather than bulldozing neighborhoods to a new future–one usually consisting of parking garages or elevated ramps–cities are now repurposing existing, unused areas. The most famous example of this is the High Line in Manhattan, the unthinkable success story that has spawned numerous schemes all around the world and back again (see New York’s “LowLine”). In Philadelphia, similar efforts are being made at rehabilitating the frontage on the Delaware River, like Race Street Pier, as parks for pedestrian use. But while this repurposing tendency hasn’t always been a hallmark of city planners, it has been, and still is, a defining characteristic of skateboarders.

Read the full article on Architizer here.

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Photo: K. Scott Kreider