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A Golden Age: Surfing's Revolutionary 1960's and '70's: Surfing's Revolutionary 1960s and '70s Hardcover – 2 Apr 2013


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Rizzoli International Publications (2 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847838285
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847838288
  • Product Dimensions: 22.4 x 2.7 x 28.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 418,998 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"John Witzig's collection of images from the most dramatic transitional era in modern surfing is certainly one of the finest. Grainy, mystical, surf-stoked, attitudinally revealing, delivering a variety of intimate views into all aspects of what was happening then, a movement that freed waveriding to be more sensory than it had been before. Simply stated, well reproduced, with accompanying swatches of relevant text from Drew Kampion, Nick Carroll, and Dave Parmenter, with an intro by Aussie pop culture scribe Mark Cherry. For collectors or historians of surfing, this one is an important addition to your library." "Surfer's Journal ""If you're a surf head, this is going to definitely be a book to pick up." "DoobyBrain.com ."."the book documents a turning point in the history of the sport, both in and out of the water. The photos feel dusty. Lazy. Refreshingly simple. And the more you linger over the images, the more history becomes a feeling -a sea change caught on film." " the Wall Street Journal ""Witzig captured the seminal images of a tumultuous era because he knew then that the men and moments that he photographed were the archetypes of a true revolution....a treasure trove of rare and poignant imagery in and around the Surfboard Revolution...figuratively straddling the line between Then and Now. Without Witzig's images, the most important epoch in surfing might well have been lost in whimsical narratives..."A Golden Age" feels nothing like a coffee table garnish, but instead required reading."" Surfline.com ""Witzig helped plant the seeds for today's surf culture. His writing and photography provided firsthand documentation of the single most important development in the history of the sport: a shift from unwieldy long boards to lightweight and highly maneuverable short boards. At times, pro surfing seems to resemble motocross more than anything in Witzig's book. But "A Golden Age" is intended as more than another congratulatory traw

About the Author

John Witzig contributed his first article to Surfing World Magazine in 1963. He edited Surf International and in 1970 co-founded Tracks, a journalistic Australian surfing magazine called the "hippest youth culture magazine being published in the world at the time." Mark Cherry (1950-2010) was an Australian writer on surfing and popular culture. Nick Carroll is a surf journalist. Dave Parmenter is a shaper and former professional surfer. Drew Kampion is the author of several books on surfing, including Stoked! A History of Surf Culture. Steve Pezman is the publisher of The Surfer's Journal.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Pictures you can not imangen, a wonderful book. If you like surfing, Australia, the awesome culture in 1960/70/80, or just beautiful pictures, but this book!
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By Peter Robinson on 12 Feb. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Wonderful book on a key period of surfing's history - a must read for any surfer. For UK surfing history visit the Museum of British Surfing in North Devon.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Best surfing title this year! 24 April 2013
By Glenn Sakamoto - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Chronicling one of the most important times of surfing history, Australian photographer and surfer John Witzig faithfully captures with words and pictures the ethos of the Shortboard Revolution. Those were exciting times, a "golden age" as the title of his new book suggests, when surfboards evolved from ten feet to six feet in a short span of a few years.

"It's fortunate that as many of the '60s photos survived as they did since a lot got lost. I was always something of an amateur archivist, and I was aware that things were happening around me, especially in the mid-1960s." says Witzig.

It didn't hurt that Witzig also happened to be friends with Bob McTavish, George Greenough, Nat Young, and Wayne Lynch. Being able to comfortably photograph these subjects adds to the intimacy of the images. Whereas brother Paul Witzig (Hot Generation, Evolution, Sea of Joy) showed us a moving glimpse of the era, John's photos suspend the moment and sear into our consciousness an image like "Headless McTavish," a breathtaking grainy black and white image of Bob literally involving himself in the curl (page 76).

A beautifully illustrated volume (the publisher is Rizzoli, a well respected coffee table art book publisher) with 208 pages of mostly photographs either in black and white with sepia or full technicolor, Witzig warmly supplies the captions to the imagery in a breezy, personal style. Witzig notes, "I wanted to be as true to them and to the times as I could. I didn't want the captions to be from an objective observer and I was encouraged to write from the point of view of a participant."

Like waves, the book's chapters are delivered in sets with colorful titles as Road Tripping, Revolution, Country Soul, and Iconoclasts. They are given breathing space, or lulls, to present commentaries by some of the most respected surf writers and commentators of our time - Steve Pezman, Dave Parmenter, Nick Carroll, Drew Kampion, and the late Mark Cherry.

In an age of blogs and Instagram, where youth can easily capture their surfing lives with pixels and uploads, it's hard to imagine that Witzig committed each of his iconic images to a single frame on something made from tiny particles of silver exposed to light that needed to be handled carefully and processed in the dark. Like hand shaping a surfboard, developing photographic film and making prints was a time consuming process. This fact alone makes Witzig's photographs even more astonishing.

There are many things to love about this book: the physical size, the gorgeous photography and printing, the wonderful writing, and the appearance of our most beloved surfing heroes. But most of all, it is Witzig who makes this book a real treasure as he imbues it with a genuine abundance of both heart and soul. Every surfing devotee and surf history buff owes it to themselves to find a place for Witzig's "A Golden Age" in their library.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Oh, the Rivalries! 12 Jan. 2014
By ColleenMcGrath - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I just looked across the room to the surfer-of-a-certain-age (for whom this book was a Christmas gift) and asked "Is it good?" His reply was quintessentially Southern Californian: "It was REALLY good -- especially when you consider it's written from an Australian perspective."
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A Golden Age 30 Dec. 2013
By Royce G Cansler - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Incredible insight into a magical time in Oz surfing. I would highly recommend this book if you lived through the 70"s.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Amazing book 28 Jun. 2013
By Robert J Jenkins - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Lots of surf books are a dime a dozen - this is anything but - a masterpiece representing a life time of achievement - get it - none better out there
I bought this for my husband, who remembers the ... 20 Sept. 2014
By Judy M - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this for my husband, who remembers the days of the long boards and really the infancy of the surfing culture. He loves it and so will anyone who wants to have a nostalgic look back at a lifestyle they once embraced.
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