When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
Llewelynn Fletcher's immersive sculptures beguile the senses. Sasha Petrenko's site-specific installations and performances strive to capture a dynamic, living planet. Austin Thomas hides heady themes in seemingly austere drawings, photos, and sculptures. She also cobbles together site-specific social spaces which she calls "perches," but which are obviously kick-ass treehouses, minus the trees. These and other artists are contributing super-sized works for "Just Passing Through: Sculptures and Installations" at the University of San Francisco's Rooftop Sculpture Terrace. "Just Passing Through" promises to challenge notions about how we inhabit or pass through space, or at least provide a lovely respite in a busy city.
"Just Passing Through: Sculptures and Installations" is open to the public 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and runs through Dec. 11 at Kalmanovitz Hall, University of San Francisco, 2130 Fulton St., S.F. Free; 422-5178 or usfca.edu. More
Mondays-Fridays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Dec. 11
This sophomore offering from the Brighton quartet British Sea Power blends two forms of British Romanticism: 1980s new wave and 1880s Victorian poetry. Frontman Yan likens emotional states to states of nature. "Lakes are forming on the pockets of your brain," he sings on "True Adventures," later turning his attention to the ocean for "Oh Larsen B": "You're fractured and cold, but your heart is unbroken/ My favorite, foremost coastal Antarctic shelf/ Oh Larsen B, oh you can fall on me!" The lyrics on Open Season can get particularly verbose (see "Agonic lines, ascendancies/ And amatory tendencies," from "Be Gone"), but the melodies and rhythms produce both upbeat anthems suitable for a drive to the beach with chums after a breakup and cathartic ambient ballads to ponder on the way home; "I headed for the coastal regions of my mind," sings Yan on "It Ended on an Oily Stage." As summer fog rolls into our own coastal Victorian city, Open Season is a perfect complement.