The photographs here are ones that havent made the cut previously, or that Ive noticed in the meantime pictures that didnt seem important when they were taken (mainly from the mid-1960s until around 1978) but have attracted my attention some 40 years later. (mostly) Its because they seem to capture the spirit of those times times irrevocably gone.
About the Author
John Witzig got lucky when some of his friends got famous. He was hanging around surfing in Australia with the right people at the right time. He contributed his first piece to Surfing World in 1963 and later worked full-time for the magazine. In 1966 he produced the pivotal New Era issue that documented for the first time the rapid changes in performance and equipment taking place in surfing and being lead by the Australians.
After Nat Young's win at the World Championships in San Diego in 1967 he wrote "We're Tops" Now for the American publication Surfer an article later described as splendidly inflammatory. He went on to edit Surf International for Gareth Powell, founded Tracks in 1970 with Albe Falzon and David Elfick, Sea Notes in 1977, and contribute occasionally to American magazines.
Witzig took the defining Australian images of the period with an artful eye, incorporating grain and texture to capture the aesthetic as well as athletic prowess. Those decades were a time of revelation, emergence, and revolution, the sport at large being still nave to a foreboding that surfings elite cultish status would soon dissolve, obliterated by waves of overpopulation and exploitation. Thus, the images take on a special poignancy. Steve Pezman Publisher The Surfers Journal.
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Published: 1st February 2012
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 36.000 x 26.000