MONOTYPES Part 2
8 fin stubfish squash hacked squaretail, with own texta design? Check. Finless Alaia, hand reared by artisan in Molokai and bought on ebay for only €3000? Check. 1960s reclaimed log with three foot skeg? Check. Suspect mustache, worn ironically, maybe? Check. Own fashion label startup, ideally, or at least signature series in the pipeline with sponsor? Check. A louche air of general dissatisfaction with the surfing and wider world in general, matched with a barely-controlled arrogance that his anti-consumer consumerist approach will pave the way for a new world order? Check. 1950s Leica M3 and Super 8 camera? Check. Blog? Check. Arty, skinny small breasted muse girlfriend that is kinda hot in unwashed unorthodox brunette way? Check. Fixed wheeled bike? Check. Multiple tattoos, sprouting irreverent diatribes, Japanese katakana or self-aware dross? Check? Chinos and boat shoes? Check. Guess what? You’re surf hipster.
Now of course the surf hipster is nothing new. Hipsters have been rallying for authenticity and against the mainstream since Mikey Dora mooned the judges in the semi-final of the Malibu Classic in 1958. And as surfing has become more and more mainstream ever since, a select branch of anti-fashion fashionistas have always been on hand, articulately mumbling a contrary viewpoint and type of facial hair.
They always seem to be on the search for authenticity, and yet can’t seen to grasp the point that often their whole way of living seems to be a total fabrication, a well planned pastiche of every anti-trend trend there has ever been, or ever will be.
The modern hipster has a few heroes. Dane Reynolds with his doe-eyed modest mumblings, his DIY blog, his future retro quiver and his failed desire to be anything but the world’s most talented and highest paid surfer has fallen into the hipster hole, even if he didn’t mean to.
Alex Knost is another hipster that has been equally pilloried and championed, his mixed media messaging agreeing to a whole wave of skinny jean wearing groovers, and inflaming those who think hair and boards should be short and that skinny latte mochachinos are for pooftas.
In any case the hipster is alive and well and trimming and moustaching in a coffee house near you. And there’s no need to fret about ‘em, or even try to stop them. They do a pretty good job of that themselves, self-realisation kicking in the late 20s. As of now no hipster has been found alive over the age of 30.
- Ben Mondy
Al rips though. We tried to catch him for an interview a couple of years back, but kooked it in the email foreplay by calling him fruity. That was the end of that…
Subject: Interview Surf Europe
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:04:07 +0000
Message body Hey Alex Knost!
Paul from Surf Europe mag in France here. Im gonna be in Orange County from next weekend and was wondering if you were there and if you would be keen to do an interview with us for the website?
Just lemme know if you are keen
ummm – im pretty timid to do interviews right now…what is it about
no worries Alex
I would hate to twist your arm…
arms are free, just wanted to know what it was about-
shredding good waves and weather right now..
it looks like youll score all next week
Message body hey Alex!
The interview is just about you mainly, your shred style and your fruity persona. If you are keen just gimme a shout I will be gentle with you I promise!