Against the Grain:
Skate Culture and the Camera
6 – 22 July 2018 | London
C.R. Stecyk III
Glen E. Friedman
J. Grant Brittain
Steve Douglas (411VM)
Jaime Marie Davis
Against the Grain: Skate Culture and the Camera is an exhibition that celebrates the phenomena of skateboarding, with the photographers and filmmakers who documented the movement. Despite the subculture’s influence and resonance in almost every aspect of popular culture, the artistic forms surrounding this emblem of freedom and rebellion have largely been ignored.
Brought together for the first time, this historical review highlights behind the scene glimpses and cultural shifts associated with skateboarding throughout the past 50 years. Pioneering figures skating Southern California pools and schoolyard banks of the 1970’s are portrayed, as well as devious manipulations of urban architecture and social impact movements shaping new chapters of skateboarding’s evolution.
The photographers featured are known for circulating imagery from within an active community, and have taken countless risks in uncontrollable, and at times reckless or controversial environments. Often dismissed for solely capturing the decisive moment or ‘peak action trick’, this wide ranging genre of photography has expanded to many documentary and artistic styles and continues to exist through its own decree. The exhibition focuses on content falling outside the commonly held frame, and offers a number of lenses through which to view its many histories.
Archival material from SkateBoarder, Thrasher, Transworld, R.a.D (Read and Destroy), Sidewalk, 411 Video Magazine and other publications features media that was essential to circulating information about skateboarding and contributed to the international force it is today.