Only today’s demented society could make such a movie…
If there’s anything the 2010s will be remembered for, it’s the rise and rise of the Vulnerable Adult Learner Surfer.
Meteoric, as the Greeks say.
This thirty-minute film, How to Learn How to Surf, follows the travails of a group of New York VALs as they struggle to come to terms with their impotence in the ocean and the futility of their doomed pursuit.
There is no expense spared in their quest.
The group stays at Rizal Tanjung’s surf resort Disa Limasan with its six pretty Javanese-style houses parked in lush green paddocks overlooking three bays in the East Javanese village of Watu Kerung.
Cars, boats and surf coaches, which include Riz, Balinese shredder Marlon Gerber and Newport’s Punker Pat, are on call.
And yet, success is elusive, impossible.
If you don’t surf, don’t start, has never been more appropriate.
Still, it’s an oddly compelling movie if only to illuminate the thought processes of VALs.
How to Learn How to Surf was created by Tom Sachs, the fifty-three-year-old New York sculptor, who made his name in 1994 with a Christmas window display for Barneys called Hello Kitty Nativity.
Sachs fashioned the Virgin Mary as a Chanel bra-wearing Hello Kitty, the stable had a a McDonalds logo and the Three Kings were modelled as Bart Simpson.
My favourite work of Sachs is his Chanel guillotine from 1998, a riposte to the home of world couture that was still decapitating its citizens, and others, as late as 1977.