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Switzerland and back

written by Mike June 20, 2009

Teamed up with the Baldwin Avenue Group of Long Island, I had the opportunity to lead production for the Scope Basel Art Fair, beside the legendary Art Basel Exhibit in Basel, Switzerland.  The bi-week fair features upscale international contemporary art showcased by the world’s hottest galleries.  Scope is a travelling exhibit of partnered contemporary gallerests who curate the fair as a team.  Other locations include Scope Miami, London, NYC, Hamptons and LA. 

My responsibilities were to subconsciously infect curious Europeans with longboarditis as we raised the multi-million dollar tent, walls, truss, electric and lighting.  My buddies James Mac Donald, Josh Aiman and Avalanche Erickson travelled with me with their bdand new Strike’s.  We called ourselves Strike Force.  I learned European laws are different and storing a longboard in the overhead bin is “naughty”.

Our team of 10 flew from JFK to London Heathrow, where we encountered our first resistance.  Tired and a bit sideways from the in-flight wine service we were rudely approached when we stepped off the plane.  The airport clerks were bitching up a storm and took us to a private check in counter where the attendants scolded me.  I unemphatheticly apologized and walked away.  The attendant ran around her booth and grabbed my board.  Startled I spun and she had already began registering my board for emergency bag check-in.  I told her to expect 3 more boards further down the line.  1 by 1 the boards were successfuly tagged abd bagged except for Avalanche.  He was excorted to an adjunct booth where he answered a series of questions, causing him to miss the flight.

No cell phones in Europe, we relied on longboarder instinct while plotting our methods for finding Avalanche.  The next fliight was 5 hours later.  We left instructions to our production house and later that evening we reunited.  Avalanche used his board to tour Basel and miraculosly found us!  That was one of the craziest European experiences I had in my 4 tours.

-mike dallas


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