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
The title of director Jeremy Goschs engaging, elegantly made surf documentary describes the oftentimes brash methods employed by a pack of scrappy foreignersAustralians Ian Cairns, Mark Richards, Peter Townend, and Wayne Rabbit Bartholomew, plus South Africans Shaun and Michael Tomsonto make names for themselves at a time (the 1970s) when surfing was still more of a local (i.e., Hawaiian) pastime than a global professional sport. And get noticed they did, shredding every wave they could, from perfectly formed Pipeline barrels to gnarlier-than-thou Waimea Bay closeouts, effectively creating the look and ethos of modern pro surfing in their wake. Occasionally, the sextets daredevil brio got the better of themand earned the ire of more than a few North Shore localsbut its humility and gratitude that characterize these wave-riding éminences grises today as they look back on their youthful selves (via some spectacular Super-8 and 16mm archival footage) and marvel at the evolution of the surf lifestyle into a multibillion-dollar industry. Although it cant help hitting some familiar beatschiefly the tension between surfings pure roots and its nascent commercializationBustin Down the Door always favors the personal anecdote over the historical generalization, and, more than any movie of its kind since Dana Browns 2003 Step Into Liquid, will leave surf junkies and novices alike longing to get their feet wet.
Aug. 1-7, 2008