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  • October 14, 2017
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Nick Jensen Interviews Oliver Laric for Solo Skate Mag

For our latest Artist Series, Isle has worked with Oliver Laric on a set of eight boards and three tees. The Austrian-born artist currently resides in Berlin and his recent work explores the additional value that arises through copying and cultural transfer.

Nick Jensen spoke with Oliver Laric about his work in an exclusive interview for Solo Skate Mag. Read an excerpt below, along with images of the new Isle boards and then continue the journey at oliverlaric.com

"Have you ever seen it on YouTube when people perform over their favourite hits? I always thought – why do they do that? I would be embarrassed, but perhaps if I considered myself to be a cool and talented rapper/singer, then I would think otherwise. This came to me when I saw Oliver Laric’s first solo exhibition in London back in 2008. He compiled multiple YouTube clips of amateur acolytes rapping over 50 Cent’s In Da Club, Candy Shop and How We Do. It made me laugh and drew me in – I was fascinated. Oliver brings new relationships to things that I would have otherwise missed. I admire his work and I am delighted to be working with him on our next series for Isle."
Nick Jensen

Hi Oliver, I remember when I contacted you, you already knew about Isle – and you have quite an extensive knowledge about skateboarding in general. Did you use to skate? And what interests you about it?

I was skating from when I was 11 until I was 16 or 17 and it was central to my life. It all ended with a complicated fracture of my right arm. At some point, I did have naive ambitions to become pro, which never became a reality, so doing board graphics now is a delayed dream come true.

Who are your favorite skaters?

While I was still skating, I was following Jamie Thomas, Brian Anderson, Kareem Campbell, Tom Penny, and Ricky Oyola, among others. As of late, I enjoy watching Bryan Herman, Neen Williams, Lem Villemin, Tom Knox, and Diego Najera, among others.

Most of the artworks you chose for the Isle boards are from your Transformation and Kopienkritik series. Why did you choose these?

The motifs depict transitional moments, somewhere between A and B, that are inherently adaptable, so they can simultaneously exist as skateboard graphics, sculptures, and videos.

Were there any problems or new opportunities in translating your existing artworks?

The vertical format is not easy at all and I do have a different appreciation for regular board designers from this experience.

A lot of your work involves animation. Characters morph from one state into another. Has it been a challenge to use elements from your animations as static images for the boards? Does skateboarding bring a different kind of momentum to your ideas?

A still from a video omits information, but it also has potential to produce speculative information. I like the idea that a single moment in time can imply an imagined before and after.

Does the worth of an artwork, the monetary as well as the artistic, differ whether it’s printed on a skateboard or it is a photo print/sculpture in a gallery? And do you enjoy the thought that people will be sliding and marking your artworks now?

I’m very excited to see how the graphics will change through that kind of usage. My favorite public monuments tend to be those that don’t exist in a vacuum but keep getting modified by nature or graffiti. To me, there is no predefined hierarchy of values between the different iterations of the work from skateboard to museum.

Walter Benjamin argued in his famous essay The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction that reproducing an artwork through printing or photography was to take away from its aura. Do you think about artworks in terms of aura?

I completely disagree with that thought. If anything, reproduction seems to amplify aura. Every T-shirt, lighter, and napkin depicting the Mona Lisa acts as an invitation to make that pilgrimage to the Louvre.

I feel like skaters relate aura to style. A certain thing that can’t be reproduced. There is only one Gino, for example. Do you agree?

People certainly seem to attempt the reproduction of style. I felt like that was the case when Tom Penny appeared. I noticed an influx of skaters trying very hard to look relaxed. Every skater emulating Tom Penny seems to amplify his aura. It’s hard to articulate style and even harder to quantify, which might be the issue with formats such as SLS.

The increase in new technology and the accessibility of information has changed skateboarding dramatically. Do you think this changes the quality of our experiences?

I wonder if there are any studies on the effects of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater on technical progression in skating and if there has been an observable increase of multi-trick-ledge-combos in skate videos following the release of the game. There are obvious benefits to accessibility, but I guess there is an element of pressure to participate and a continuous need to document and spread material that demands affirmation.

Read the rest of the interview at Solo now: http://www.soloskatemag.com/en/oliver-laric

  • October 13, 2017
  • By Isle
  • in Blog
Atlantic Drift – Episode 5 – Hippy Jumps?

Atlantic Drift – Episode 5 – Hippy Jumps?

Fresh from the lens of Jacob Harris, the Atlantic Drift series is back again. Tune in to the fifth episode below… And just in case you wanted to see them all again, the previous four episodes are below…        

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  • November 20, 2016
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Carhartt WIP x Isle Skateboards x Raphaël Zarka

The Carhartt WIP x Isle Skateboards x Raphaël Zarka project launched last Thursday at the Protein Studios in London.

An unconventional encounter between maths, art and skateboarding, the exhibition utilises film, sculpture and photography, documenting a series of performances, at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Institute of Contemporary Art of Singapore and Sainte-Croix Museum in Poitiers.

The project originated with Carhartt WIP approaching us to work on a collaborative collection. To bring the vision to life and add a unique aspect to the project, we invited artist and fellow skateboarder, Raphaël Zarka to get involved. Raphael had been researching the work of 19th Century mathematician Arthur Moritz Schoenflies, who had developed his own three dimensional models. These specifically captivated Zarka's attention, inspired with their sculptural potential and inspiring his own work which featured within the event space, surrounded by large format images of Isle team riders Sylvain Tognelli, Nick Jensen and Chris Jones.

As an added element, Dan Magee created PAVING SPACE: an unconventional encounter between maths, art and skateboarding. The film documents the series of performances, with behind the scenes insights from both Raphael and the skaters. See the trailer below – we'll post the full edit up shortly.

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The full range of clothing and decks from the collaboration is available now from our online store, all good skate stores – and also online at www.carhartt-wip.com.

  • September 4, 2016
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Chris Jones Turns Pro For Isle!

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Chris Jones turned pro for Isle at Colin Read's 'Spirit Quest' premiere in London last night, much to the delight of everyone in attendance. Aside from being one of the nicest guys out there, Chris has continually put in time killing it on his board and we're extremely proud to add him to our pro roster. His two new boards are due to hit stores in the next couple of weeks.

Chris's section in 'Spirit Quest' should serve as a reminder just how good he is: be sure to check out the film when it drops shortly, as it's one of the best we've seen. Thanks to all who everyone who helped out (Wes, Bryce, Fraser, Jacob, just to name a few) and everyone who attended the showing and the after party.

Congratulations Chris!

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  • June 7, 2016
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Mickey Jonson x Shellfinger

Mickey goes buckwild for Shellfinger's latest video production. Watch the video below and then click here to find out a little more... G'warn Mickey!
 

  • May 30, 2016
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Nicaragua – A film by Jacob Elliott Harris

Check out Jacob Elliott Harris's new film for Grey Skateboard Magazine, produced in association with Converse Cons. Watch Remy Taveira, Mike Arnold and Sylvain Tognelli handle the beautiful landscape and harsh terrain of Nicaragua. Excellent stuff.
 

  • March 18, 2016
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Easter Update…

We figured it was time for a quick update on what's been going on at Isle.

Firstly, feast your eyes on Mark Jackson's latest edit, 'Licence Free', featuring Nick and Casper alongside Blondey McCoy and James Coyle. So damn good, from start to finish.

Tom Knox gets interviewed by Will Harmon in issue 5 of Free. Well worth grabbing a copy from your local shop.

Other tidbits: Chris Jones is over in NYC at the moment, Sylvain and Jacob Harris have just returned from Nicaragua and Shier has recently joined adidas as their new Team Manager.

New Isle boards and apparel are due into stores in the next few weeks. Watch out for the new Exposure series, alongside some special edition dipped boards. Check the latest catalogue here – contact your local store or distributor for more information.

Seeing as people have been searching for the image, I'll just leave this here...

Someone's got a new sponsor...

A photo posted by Free Skateboard Magazine (@freeskatemag) on

And, in case you missed it, some of the London boys featured in a TWS Park barge video. Check it!

Enjoy your Easter – and if anyone can beat eating seven Cadbury's Creme Eggs in under 60 seconds, get in touch.

  • January 26, 2016
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Jon Nguyen Turns Pro for Isle!

Jon Nguyen has finally turned pro – and we were proud to hand him his new boards at the TWS Awards on Friday 22nd January. Congratulations to Jon and well done on taking the last part in the new TWS video, 'Substance'. We're all hyped!

To mark this occasion, Carson Lee created a retrospective edit of Jon's video parts to date: check it out below.

Finally, Isle did well at the BRIGHT European Skateboard Awards in Berlin last week: we took Brand of the Year, Vase took Video of the Year, Tom Knox got Video Part of the Year and our beloved Jacob Harris took Videographer of the Year. To have achieved that in under three years is pretty humbling for us: congrats to all involved and thank you to anyone who voted for us. And, most importantly, thanks to anyone who's supported or believed in Isle.

Jon Nguyen Turns Pro for Isle!
(photo by Blair Alley)

  • December 23, 2015
  • By Isle
  • in Blog

Vase – digital download available now!

We interrupt our Christmas holidays to bring you this special bulletin: Vase is now available as a download here: https://vase.vhx.tv

We're proud to say that Vase has been nominated for best video and Isle for best team in the TWS awards. If you've enjoyed our exploits in 2015, please feel free to show your appreciation and give us a vote!

Last, but not least: a huge thank you to everyone who's supported us this year. Roll on 2016!

Contact Isle

 


To purchase Isle products, please contact your local store or distributor. Download our Spring/Summer 2016 lookbook here.


For all other information, please contact us directly using the contact form on the left or by emailing us at: info@isleskateboards.com


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