Wax On, Wax Off: "Surf Story" Release Party in Costa Mesa
All photos by John Gilhooley

Wax On, Wax Off: "Surf Story" Release Party in Costa Mesa

Friday, Dec. 18 at the Hurley International headquarters in Costa Mesa, Robb Havassy and company held a party, complete with art show and concert, to commemorate the release of Havassy's book Surf Story, the culmination of years of thinking and work by the man whose creativity and genuine love of surf culture gave birth to the ambitious project.

The official release of Surf Story was held during the giant waves and heady atmosphere at Oahu's North Shore on Dec. 9. But amid the unprecedented surf conditions and the excitement of the Triple Crown, fingers were crossed as to how successful the event would be.

The event last Friday at Hurley was certainly better attended and larger than the official North Shore release. It brought together, just as Havassy's project has, the many eclectic elements of surf art and culture. From desolate wastes populated by skeletal zombie surfers, to serene nature scapes and clean-lined paradisiacal tropics, the wide variety of paintings captured a huge range of interpretations and experiences of the world of surfing.

Hundreds of folks from throughout the surf industry attended, and the night included live performances by Iodine69, M Phase, Tornado Rider and more. Wealthy-ish surfing socialites paid top dollar for classic photo prints and paintings. Robb Havassy, meanwhile, maintained an astounding energy level, smiling, shaking hands, and furiously signing books without losing an iota of genuineness.

The first run of Surf Story is a batch of only 1,000 collector copies, each numbered and signed. Proceeds from this limited batch of books will benefit the Surfrider Foundation.

Oh yeah, and speaking of art, on the way over there, I saw a huge painting of a multi-colored elephant that seemed to be illegally bolted to the abandoned hut-style building that used to be the home of Tower Records. The elephant looked conspicuously similar to the art of Jason Maloney, one of our recent interviewees. . . . Just thought it was worth mentioning. Happy holidays!


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