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
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
Holiday parties are rather predictable -- a little mistletoe here, an indiscreet coworker there, and some strong libations to stave off the season's ennui. If you're itching to celebrate in a different way -- and maybe even do a little unconventional Christmas shopping while you're at it -- skip the office gala altogether and head out to Nude Aid. Put on by the Center for Sex and Culture, the benefit is a self-professed "erotic art making and giveaway event" in which artists and photographers open up their creative process to the public, with a little help from models posing nearly nude or in their kinkiest get-up. Produced by burlesque queen Lady Monster and sexologist Carol Queen, it's the Center's most talked-about event. Last year, spectators witnessed luminaries like Leonard Nimoy, whose most recent claim to fame is snapshots of Reubenesque women in the buff, and post-porn modernist Annie Sprinkle getting their creative groove on. And aside from admiring all the nubile eye candy, party-goers can take home the pieces they inspire -- a piece of art is included in the price admission. Erotic starlets Nina Hartley and Sharon Mitchell host the festivities.
Sun., Dec. 9, 5 p.m., 2007