Flights to Iceland just got a whole lot dearer.
So it’s a good job that Dion Agius and co went when they did. Last week WOW Air, the least expensive way you hop from London, Paris etc. to Iceland, went into administration. Flight prices rocketed, which is a major bummer for Iceland as they’re trying to give tourism a good push, and a bummer for you, because Iceland looks like a fine place to spend a little time. Don’t fret though, as we can live vicariously through Dion—a man who’s visited the country on a number of occasions—as we wait for another of Europe’s discount airlines to pick up the WOW Air slack.
All black, low light.
Dion travelled to Iceland with two of his long time slashy (hey, nothing wrong with blending careers) friends: manager/filmer/photographer Beren Hall, and designer/photographer Grady Archbald. Their loose plan was to drive their camper around, surf, explore, and shoot the latest additions to Dion’s +/+ range along the way. The three failed to grasp the surf they were after, but as anyone with interests outside of fins and litreage knows, getting skunked often leads to the most memorable trips. Why? Because the anxiety of wind, tides and what’s around the next headland disappears. Mornings get slower, evenings longer, and when you’re in Iceland, there’s no shortage of things to do that you can’t experience at home.
“Just a nice all-round shoe that goes with everything and is comfortable,” Dion says of the Los Angered II’s. “A bunch of the Globe team have been skating them too and they seem to work.”
“This was my second time to Iceland. Even though we didn’t get waves, I think I enjoyed it almost more than the first,” Dion says of the trip. “We just explored every inch of the Island for 10 days straight, just me and two of my best friends in a big camper van. No real agenda besides seeing as much as we possibly could.” It’s never been just about the surfing with Dion, which (as hard as it is for some to grasp) is one of the elements that’s given his career such longevity. Moving to New York when that wasn’t a done thing, the art, the photography, the culture, it’s such an integral part of Dion’s brand. And it works because it’s authentic; the guy’s interests are broad. Using surfing as a vehicle to explore whatever it is you’re into at the time. Surely that’s the real dream gig, right?
A number of futile (but photogenic) surfing attempts were made…
Dion’s personal Globe collection, +/+, took up where his blog, Dion.tv, left off as a portal for the rolling creative ramblings of a modern day rambling man. The range is a work in progress, with pieces being added sporadically, and at the seasonal whims of Dion who, like all good men, admits to occasionally going intentionally “AWOL”. “I’ve been lucky to be really involved with the design process since we started on the first +/+ collection,” Dion tells me. “It starts with (Globe designers) Dan and Craig dedicating me a certain number of pieces for that season. Then I’ll start referencing back through pieces I might have picked up or seen recently that I liked on the road or dig back through my collection of old clothes at home and see if there’s anything in there that sparks an idea.”
White noise, snow contrast.
Globe have been smart enough to give Dion autonomy of +/+, and it’s evolved to the point where he actually commissions artists and photographers to create work for the range. “I bought a book of Ikebana last time I was in Japan and thought it would be a fun way to shoot the new Los Angered II,” Dion says. “I commissioned my friend Mia Rankin, an amazing young Australian photographer, to shoot some Ikebana style still life with the shoes. And then she also shot a bunch of flower arrangements that I ended up using for tee graphics as well.” The most recent set of graphics comes from a number of sources, and the Mickey Mouse hand holding the dagger—a particular favourite of ours—was another of Dion’s commissions.
“The latest photo and text based stuff is just a bunch of photos I took around Tasmania and mixed in with some words that were going through my head or I was listening to at that time,” Dion continues, “The Mickey Mouse hand holding a stiletto that I commissioned this artist Kevin Cook to draw up.”
Simple, and infinitely wearable.
Wherever you stand on his surfing, various commercial ventures (literally decades of industry pay checks, smartly invested) or artistic endeavours, you can’t fault Dion Agius for his tenacity and unquenchable desire to explore new things. We salute the Tasmanian for all his tireless pursuits, and thank him for making surfing just that little bit more interesting.