Herbie Fletcher recycles Pipeline carnage into art installations

| posted on February 26, 2013

Each board lost its life at Pipe before being resurrected as art in New York by Herbie Fletcher. Photo: Dibi Fletcher

Words and Photos by Dibi Fletcher

The crates carrying the broken surfboards arrived on the 8th of February while the snow was coming down and huge drifts were piling up along the sidewalk. These broken boards, previously owned by some of the legends of surfing, were laid on the floor of the gallery. It was strange to see them all lined up with people walking by outside bundled up for the 28 degree weather.

The exhibition started to really take shape when our friend Julian Schnabel got involved. What had looked like a sea of broken boards floating in the white water of the gallery floor were lifted and given significant positions on six of the gallery walls. The Wrecktangles tell a story that can be appreciated by anybody, regardless of whether one possessed any knowledge of surfing. From the juxtaposition of the broken jagged shapes to the placement of the pros corporate sponsorship logos, these once perfect, custom-made waveriding tools all broken in the massive tubes at Pipeline were put together to create a dynamic piece of contemporary surf culture on display from the unique imagination of Herbie.

Wrecktangles by Herbie Fletcher, at the Hole NYC, 312 Bowery, NY, opened on February 9th.

  • d

    Can someone please tell me how a pile of broken boards is art? Its hardly creative. If that’s art then I have a few master pieces of my own in my shed.

  • Jimmy the Saint

    In my opinion this is not art, but if Herbie Fletcher can turn a profit selling these wrecktangles good luck to him, better have these remains on the walls of “art” fans than in a landfill.

  • Scott

    I don’t understand art. Looks like a bunch fuckin broken boards to me. Prob could have been recycled into new boards and taken back out to pipe. I think the boards would have wanted it that way.

  • Will Butler

    I disagree entirely…I love this exhibition. It’s amazing when everyday objects (in this case surf boards) are salvaged and reassembled into art. Though you may have a pile of broken boards behind the shed, most people don’t. To me this exhibit really invokes thoughts of both the waves those boards rode and the serious digger they ultimately took. The white background really makes their colors pop as well.

  • chris

    Ridiculously funny and uniquely imaginative? Put Julian Schnabel in the background and we have art…

  • killyridols

    Surfer, would you let a pro surfer write about how great his own exploits are? Or a photographer write about how great his own photos are? Stop shrinking in the face of every Fletcher family “press release” about the monumental nature of every fart they share with Schnabel and exert some journalistic controls of whatever what you publish.

  • Parko’s Wife’s jugs on the ASP banquet were f***in awesome

    Well, supposedly, art is something that creates any type of feeling/reaction in its audience, so this could, in fact, be considered art if you take a “textbook” approach to it. Honnestly, these things would be better off recycled and given to less fortunate kids who do cannot afford a new board.The fact that this ape gets to do an exhibition with it just comes along with the whole “we are free surfers, hence hipsters, hence wanna be fucking artists and as gay as the day is long” tyo of deal that floods surf media these days. And it’s a shame that a guy that founded astrodeck, such a legendary and core surf brand, is getting on the fuckin’ bandwagon.

  • El Snatcho

    Anyone else notice the predominance of Astrodeck pads in the top photo? Is this art or just another advertisement for Herbie’s company? Typical.

  • andy warhol

    some broken boards could be arranged as art, but not by a surfer. by an artist. herbie is great, but an artist he is not.

  • RP

    ……..or fix them all and send them to a bunch of kids that don’t have anything at all. That would be news worthy. Love the Fletchers but this is beyond lame.

  • shane

    i think he had a chance to make some form of art but missed it by a mile a few colours put together isn’t art he must be poplar because good art carnt get air time these days he could have another go with that rubbish

  • JKAS

    If I can do it…IT’S NOT ART.

  • rafael

    Wow the VOLCOM Surf Team are all pipeline chargers or they only go to Hawaii to Break Boards lol.

  • Just sayin

    Most of the people commenting on here are full of shit. Yeah, the idea seems like a simple and obvious choice but the execution is fucking rad. I’m not getting all caught up in the conceptual shit, I’m looking at all the angles and layers and how these are pretty massive pieces and would be sick to see in person. I probably like the second and third ones the best

  • Jeff

    Oh, and saying “I could do that” is a fucking cop out. Bottom line is, you didn’t

  • Townie808

    Give credit where credit is due. Anyone who has ever went to the nightclubs at The Modern Hotel fronting Ala Moana Bowls since it opened 3yrs ago has seen the original inspiration for the “art” that Herbie is taking credit for. Google “Modern Honolulu Lobby” and look at the IMAGES. Broken boards from some of the most famous surfers around. I apologize if Herbie was the one who created that piece 3yrs ago. But if he did not, he should be forthright and divulge his inspiration.

    • kimoFoReal

      with one google search you could have learned that indeed fletcher did the wrecktangle behind the desk at The Modern.

  • not worthy of name

    WTF!!!! this is like a four year old at the wedge art…. Are u Fing kiddin me… Volcom is from CDM high school… 54th street not Hawaii

  • Bob’s Your Uncle

    The backyard of Dane Reynold’s house looks the same from the pictures I’ve seen.