Surf City, Sydney

an Historic Houses Trust blog

Puberty Blues screening this Saturday

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Best mates Debbie (Nell Schofield) and Sue (Jad Capelja) with their new Emerald surfboard, about to stir up the boys on the beach in Bruce Beresford’s 1981 movie Puberty Blues 1981

We’re screening the 1981 movie Puberty Blues this Saturday at the Museum of Sydney along with commentary from film archivist Jamie Leonarder, film critic and curator Paul Byrnes and surf blogger Rebecca Olive. Its a spot on, frankly told – and pretty uncomfortable – coming-of-age tale, set on the coast at Cronulla in the late 1970s. If you haven’t seen it in 30 years or even if you’re a ‘pubes’ fan and cultishly re-watch it regularly, this will be a great arvo of discussion and cringey nostalgia for a time many of us would rather forget.

PUBERTY BLUES MOVIE SCREENING
With Jamie Leonarder, Paul Byrnes and Rebecca Olive

Saturday 18 February 2012
From 1pm

Museum of Sydney
Cnr Bridge and Philip Street, Sydney

event info here

Written by Gary Crockett

February 15th, 2012 at 10:43 am

Posted in 1970s

Matt Chojnacki at Surf City this Sunday

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Matt Chojnacki photo courtesy Matt Johnson Photography

EXHIBITION FLOOR TALK

Matt Chojnacki on surf art, style and pop culture.

Sunday 19 February 2012
2pm – 3pm

Museum of Sydney
Cnr Bridge and Phillip Street, Sydney

event details here

Written by Gary Crockett

February 15th, 2012 at 3:07 am

Posted in exhibition

Bennett V-bottom 1968

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WE WANT YOUR HELP… pretty sure someone out there will be able to help Norm with info on the likely shaper of his ripper Bennett v-bottom. There’s a number 5880 printed at the base of the fin. Perhaps there’s a sales or stock register on hand at Bennetts from this period…? Either email the author garyc@hht.net.au or post a comment on the blog.

Hi Gary – Spoke last week at the museum; you mentioned you may be able to help with the age and the shaper of my surf board. As mentioned the build number at the base of the fin is 5880. I brought it second hand in 1968. Regards Norm

Written by Gary Crockett

February 15th, 2012 at 2:25 am

World surfing contest, Manly

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MANLY 2012

photo Gary Crockett

Crowds hit North Steyne yesterday for the first weekend of the inaugural Australian Open of Surfing, and the return of big money stadium-style surf contests to Sydney after more than 2 decades. A few minutes after this shot was taken an approaching electrical storm forced organisers to empty the crowded stands and the nearby skate bowl.

MANLY 1964

centre spread photo Ron Perrott [American] Surfer September 1964

The first official international contest of surfers took place on Manly’s North Steyne, in May 1964. Some said it was 65,000 people on the beach, although this aerial shot taken of the big event by Ron Perrott for American Surfer magazine shows a smaller crowd. The photo caption reads… In a helicopter view of the World Contest, surfer-photographer Ron Perrott captures the colour of the spectacle. The crowd on the beach watches participants (left, center), while surfers on the right work out in the “free surf” area.

Written by Gary Crockett

February 13th, 2012 at 5:18 am

Posted in 1960s,exhibition

Gidget and Elvis ‘clean-teen’ screen romp

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SPECIAL FILM SCREENING – Gidget (1959) and Blue Hawaii (1961)
Presented by Nell Schofield (actor and presenter) and Jaimie and Aspasia Leonarder (Mu Meson Archive and broadcasters)
Saturday 11 February 2012
From 1pm

Museum of Sydney
Cnr Bridge and Phillip Street, Sydney

$30

event details here

Tired of grey skies? Wanna feel sun on your skin again? Come down to Surf City this Saturday arvo for a frothy dose of classic hollywood ‘clean-teen’ fun. Together Gidget and Blue Hawaii kicked off the ‘beach party’ teen flick genre of the early 60s, when the boards were big, the boardies were tight, the bongos were beatin, the butts were wigglin and the surf was bitchin. This big screen double feature will be accompanied by commentary and analysis from Sydney’s own Gidget Nell Schofield and cultural boundary riders Jaimie and Aspasia Leonarder. So take note all you grems, fems and hodads – don’t disappoint The Big Kahuna.

Written by Gary Crockett

February 8th, 2012 at 3:56 am

Posted in 1950s,1960s

Paul Clarke on Surf Music

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PAUL CLARKE ON SURF MUSIC
Sunday 5 February 2012
2pm – 3pm

Museum of Sydney
Cnr Bridge and Phillip Street, Sydney

FREE with museum entry

event details here

Surfing, unlike any other sport, religion or lifestyle, comes complete with its own soundtrack. This Sunday afternoon, pop culture buff Paul Clarke – who wrote and produced the surf doco Bombora – the Story of Australian Surfing and car doco Wide Open Road, is talking about surf music and its deep and narly roots in surf culture – from the shrieking reverb and cowboy cool of Dick Dale and the jangling psychedelia of The Easybeats in the 60s through to the salty grunge of Midnight Oil and the Go Betweens in the late 1970s and beyond.

Written by Gary Crockett

February 1st, 2012 at 3:22 am

Posted in 1960s,1970s,exhibition

Allan Levick, Bondi 1950s

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Former Bondi boy Allan Levick called recently to talk about his 1950s Gordon Woods ‘Okanui’ surfboard. I asked him to send in some pics and pen a few memories.

photos courtesy Allan Levick

I had only used this brilliant surfboard for around 3 months………(it was fantastic to ride a board which you could take where YOU wanted to go, not just where the wave dictated)…….when I was invited to join a group of “Bondi Boys” to go water ski-ing, which was still in it’s infancy here in Australia. I immediately became addicted to this “new” exciting water sport, and, rather reluctantly, stored my board away.

Here’s a few words on the origin of my nickname “IKE”. As a young Bondi kid, of around 12 years of age, I decided to try my hand at being a “paper-boy”, selling newspapers on the Bondi trams, to earn some “pocket money”, in order to fund my regular trips to the “flicks” (movies) and my growing addiction to “Cadbury’s Dairy Milk Chocolate” (which remains with me today ! ) The owner of the Newsagency Shop, Alex Griffin, grew a moustache and I “christened him “IKEY-MO”. However, HE turned it back on ME and instructed the rest of the team of “paper-boys” to ALWAYS, in future, refer to me as “IKE” and the name has stuck to this day!!

I am also sending pics of the “high-jinks” we young “Turks” used to get up to on the Beach, in those Halcyon Days!

Bondi Beach c1950s, photos courtesy Allan Levick

Just one more anecdote……when I was around 15, I bought my first 16ft long “toothpick” surf board and put together a 2 wheel trolley using old Bike wheels to walk the board down to Bondi Beach (about a mile from the family home in Denham Street).

Bondi Tram photo sourced from lindsaybridge on flickr

On countless occasions, I would “scale” on the rear of a tramcar, and trail the board and trailer all the way down to the beach behind the tram! (Quite a remarkable sight!) The conductors thought it was a great “lark” and, only once, did the local “cops” grab me and gave me a “strict talking to”!

photo courtesy Allan Levick

In conclusion, (not really anything to do with surfing, but you may be interested), water-ski-ing became my passion and I used to get up to all kinds of tricks, eg. barefoot ski-ing, ramp jumping, and the most spectacular and unique, of all, was my own invention…..”ski-ing” atop a 6ft tall stool (ladder) on a 3ft diameter, plywood disc and executing 360 degree turns and backwards ski-ing.

photo courtesy Allan Levick

The “stool” was not attached to the disc which made the exercise even more demanding. Sounds unbelievable but, fortunately, I have photos to prove it, some of which I will attach. I am retired now and still ski occasionally, but haven’t been “up the ladder” for 5 years (I reckon I could though!).

With kind regards, Allan Levick

 

Written by Gary Crockett

January 23rd, 2012 at 1:50 am

Posted in 1950s,1960s

Richard Waterhouse reviews Surf City

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Entrance to Museum of Sydney’s Surf City, © Bruce Usher 2011

Here’s a recent ‘museum sector’ review on Surf City by Richard Waterhouse in reCollections Volume 7 number 1

According to Richard … Surf City is organised in a multidimensional way that is original, creative and challenging. Along three sides of the gallery the artefacts are arranged in three layers. Standing against the rear walls are surfboards arranged chronologically, beginning with the long boards or ‘toothpicks’ of the 1940s and early 50s, followed by the early, imported Malibus; the later, locally produced (shorter and shorter) short boards; and ending with the three fin thruster. Interspersed among the boards along these walls are photos, posters and the surf fashions, including swimwear, of particular eras. In front of these artefacts are display cabinets holding more clothes and smaller photos as well as books, magazine stories relating to surfing, skateboards and even a few LP covers featuring such artists as Little Patti and the Atlantics.

READ THE REVIEW HERE

Written by Gary Crockett

December 14th, 2011 at 12:58 am

Posted in exhibition

Bondi goggles mid 1960s

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Another great photo by Charles Bill Moseley showing a pair of slick cats cooling off along the Bondi boardwalk. This and several other scenic treasures on display at Surf City, courtesy Marilyn Moseley.

Written by Gary Crockett

December 9th, 2011 at 2:15 am

Posted in 1960s

Stephen McParland ‘Beach Boys’ book launch

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Get down to the Concord Bowling Club tomorrow for the launch of surf music writer/historian Stephen McParland’s latest book on the Beach Boys.

SATURDAY 2 DECEMBER 2011
2PM
CONCORD BOWLING CLUB
CLERMONT AVENUE
CONCORD

By the way, its the first of three Beach Boys related books he’s got coming out ….so stay tuned.

Written by Gary Crockett

December 9th, 2011 at 12:31 am

Posted in exhibition

UA-4010747