Intro & Interview by Tom Ianelli
Headline & Strapline Photos by Greg Navarro
All Other Photos by Full Bleed Archive [Credited Underneath]
Ten years ago, to try and make his love for New York skateboarding translatable, Alex Corporan (with the help of Ivory Serra and Andre Razo) published Full Bleed: New York City Skate Photography, a hefty book of photos with no text, chronology or page numbers.
When you open Full Bleed, each photo has such strong associations and connections that a story starts to develop as you turn the pages. This story is aggressive and brutal one moment, then tender and communal the next. There are instances of grief, elation, spontaneity and triumph, but whether you pore over every image, or passingly look at a page or two, the book most effectively serves as a reminder that New York City is constantly redefining itself, and that the only way to make the most of it is to walk out your door and live in it, preferably with a skateboard in hand.
This month, Alex is publishing a 10th anniversary edition of Full Bleed with 96 extra pages and an introduction by Tony Hawk. I sat down with him to chat about his extensive skate history and get his take on the 10th anniversary reissue.
Soldiers & Sailors Monument, 1979. Photo by Nathan Tweti
Intro & Interview By Tom Ianelli
Photos by Greg Navarro, Daniel Weiss & Matt Weber
When a kid first picks up a board, their perspective on skating is inherently limited. It is a moment in which all skating is usually represented by the neighborhood spot — be it a driveway, parking lot, or skatepark — and the people found at that spot. The years pass, and skate culture opens up as one watches videos and travels further away from home, but there is a purity to that initial perspective, when skating, and one’s burgeoning love for it, is narrowly embodied by that singular spot.
Filmed entirely at the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Greg Navarro’s “The Upper West Side Curb Club,” is a skate filmer’s loving tribute to the spot he grew up skating.
Rarely seen in videos, the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, or just “The Monument,” is made up of a few curbs, canons and some “ledges,” that are tucked up in a park on 87th and Riverside, secluded from the shinier skate hubs of New York. With a cast of locals hitting every inch of the park, making spots out of the crust available, Greg’s video is reminiscent of simpler days spent trying to find new possibility in obstacles that have already taught you everything you know about skating. “Upper West Side Curb Club” is not limited by this nostalgic simplicity: the video is evidence that a spot’s value is determined primarily by the devotion and creativity of the skaters who hang out there.
I sat down with Greg at the new Andy Kessler skatepark on 108 to talk about the video and The Monument.
Chapman has been producing skateboards for over two decades. This makes them the longest-standing northeastern skateboard company, in addition to one of the few remaining places where you can produce a deck that comes with a “Made in the U.S.A.” emblem. Their Deer Park, NY headquarters doubles as something of an east coast skateboard museum. Everything from the first Zoo decks, Supreme artist series boards that resell for thousands of dollars, to one-offs that were never mass-produced line their walls. If someone started a skate company on the east coast these past twenty years, they probably dealt with Chapman.
We asked Gregg Chapman, one of the company’s founders, to take us on a tour through the building, and share the stories behind a select few of his favorite boards.