surfer

The photographs exhibited here could just as well be part of the “people in a religious context” showcase. Surfing is certainly a modern religion with multiple different confessions and a variety of gods worshiped. Some surfers worship the sea or the waves in particular, other surfers worship the nature, another group the sexuality or body-cult or simply themselves, some surfers worship sports and competition, some drugs and many of them worship the ideal of the Hawaiian surfers lifestyle. Although most of them will never be able to live this ideal – which is an obvious obstacle all religions have in common. Further there are many ways practicing this religion – bodysurfing, river surfing, big wave surfing, lake surfing, tow-in surfing, wakesurfing, wind powered surfing derivates. Pilgrimage places are Hawaii, Australia, South Africa and California. Beside these main spots the world surfs where a wave or enough wind can be found. Some of these places are remote or surprising, such as the Norwegian Lofoten archipelago, scenery of the surfer movie North of the Sun, or the pretty large community in Munich, Germany, who surfes perishing standing river waves. Personally I learned surfing in Brazil, in a small town named Itacaré, in gentle currents under perfect conditions. Later I surfed on a Scottish outlying island of the Hebrides in an icecold Alantic, which was an eminently opposite experience. Although I am neither good in surfing nor did I have the chance for frequent practice so far I am somewhat addicted to it and to photograph surfers or their spots.