Neon Daze & Winter Waves
Rideable snowboard art
"Neon Daze & Winter Waves" was an idea dreamed up by artist Mike Parillo and Spring Break Snowboards founder Corey Smith to create hand-made works of original, rideable art. Seventeen board-riding legends and artists conceived visions of what they'd like their boards to look like. With the support of Travis Rice's Asymbol gallery, the boards were created and then taken to Baldface Lodge outside Nelson, B.C., to be test-ridden by Parillo, Smith, Rice, Kevin Pearce and Baldface founder Jeff Pensiero. As a final step in the project, the boards were displayed in an art show at CES Contemporary in downtown LA.
What would Travis Rice make?
The invitation for "Neon Daze & Winter Waves," written by Mike Parillo, conveys the artistic mission of the project the best: Imagine that you've been teleported to a winter dreamland. You wake up not knowing where you are but it's cold and there's the soft sound of bluster in the morning. You walk out of your room, down a hallway where you see a sliding glass door that reveals snow and sun, look a little further and an amazing hike-able peak just behind your house. You rush back in to find all the gear you need with the exception of a board. In the garage you find tools, a two foot by eight foot piece of plywood, epoxy resin and enough hardware to mount your bindings.What would you make?
Each board was hand cut and shaped by Smith and Parillo in Smith's backyard in Truckee, Calif. These raw boards were then transported to Los Angeles, whereParillo spent hundreds of hoursglassing, sanding and painting them by hand into finished works of original art.
Jeremy Jones, Nathan Fletcher
L: "Lish Fish" ~ Jeremy Jones brought his favorite surfboard over to Smith's house in Tahoe to see if the board's design could ride as well on snow as it did on water. Though Jones never got a chance to test the board for himself, all of the money from the sale of it went to his non-profit, Protect Our Winters. R: "Code Red" ~ Not many people know that big wave surfer Nathan Fletcher has been snowboarding since the early '90s. This board is a collaboration between Fletcher and surf photographer Todd Glaser. The top is a Glaser photo of Fletcher riding a monster wave. The shape is modeled after a Burton Swallowtail.
Bryan Iguchi, Willie McMillon
L: "The Tribute" ~ According to Iguchi, this board has an "Aaron Murray '80s DogTown inspired" shape, mixed with a "grassroots pow surfer" rocker-style shape. This board was originally conceived to be bindingless, covered with Astro Deck and ridden like a NoBoard. R: "The Pamida" ~ True to its name, both the shape and graphics of Bluebird's Willie McMillon's board were inspired of a Black Snow snowboard he got from Pamida when he was a kid. The "love over money" graphic is a Bluebird creation.
Ian Walsh, Adam Haynes
L: "Fish out of Water" ~ Big wave surfer Ian Walsh is another closet snowboarder, and a regular in Jackson Hole during winter storm cycles. Walsh took a pin tail approach, instead of a swallowtail, for his design, modeling it after a surfboard. We don't know what's up with the penguin. R: "Pillow Dreams" ~ Adam Haynes is one of the few artists who painted his own board. This is a classic pow-surf swallowtail shape.
Gerry Lopez, Jeff Pensiero
L: "Da Powder Hound" ~ The artwork on surf legend Gerry Lopez' board is the same as what adorns his big wave riding surfboard. It is his personal design. R: "The Purring Powder Wizard" ~ Baldface's Jeff Pensiero's graphic is based on a piece of artwork entitled "Anti Bad Vibe Shield."
Pat Moore, Carl E. Smith
L: "Pow Shark" ~ The art on Pat Moore's board is inspired by one of his favorite Shut skateboard graphics. The shape is modeled after Austin Smith's Nitro powder board. R: "Do Not Fade Away" ~ This board is a collaboration between Parillo and CES Contemporary gallery's Carl E. Smith. Parillo provided the fade, Smith painted the collage. The keyhole design works in powder very much like a swallowtail.
Mike Parillo, Nick Russian
L: "Surface to Air" ~ Asymbol co-founder Mike Parillo's board came, like all his creations, from the depths of his artistic mind. Surface to air is a missile reference. R: "The Sickwell" ~ The art on longtime snowboard graphic artist Nick Russian's board is based on an old 80s skateboard deck. From his instructions: "Try to make it like the old Terry Kidwell nose shape." This is the board Parillo chose to test up at Baldface.
Corey Smith's Spring Break snowboards, seen here, provided the initial inspiration for this entire art project. These are three different variations of his Spring Break powder board. Despite what you might think, all three ride surprisingly well in deep snow.
Are they rideable?
Answer: Yes. Here, Kevin Pearce takes his board for a test drive at Baldface lodge.