“George Greenough” Photo by Craig Stecyk

Summertime always brings with it an incredible amount of sports events, art shows, and of course retail financial changes, and this July is no exception. Here’s a quick round-up of what we think are among the top stories happening right now in sports and action sports.

First, despite the horribly written story on WWD about the upcoming show “Swell” by a writer that clearly doesn’t get the sport of surfing, they were right in that Swell, the surf art show curated by Jacqueline Miro and Tim Nye, owner of Nyehaus, is absolutely huge. Swell takes up 3 venues in NYC including the Metro Pictures Gallery, Fredrich Petzel Gallery, and Nyehaus space featuring all types of surf lifestyle.

Photo by Craig Stecyk from Swell show.

What’s not typical of a surf art show within this show is that it features the urban detritus of what many surfers back in the day had to deal with, being the underdog and outcast. Such images are reflected in Craig Stecyk‘s black & white portraits of the various graffiti around top surf locations in Santa Monica and Venice Beach. Other images include pics from Catherine Opie showing surfers as humans waiting for the swell and not actually surfing yet at all. Other top pieces include surfboards designed by Herbie Fletcher and Raymond Pettibon, and photos by Dennis Hopper from his private Venice Beach collection.

World Cup Fever Continues
As we mentioned in a previous story about cool marketing ideas around the World Cup, the Nike Sportswear collaboration with The Fader Magazine continues with its latest music installation in episode 5. Called The Fader’s Pitch Perfect, this episode features Youth Day in Soweto with performances by Seun Kuti & Egypt 80, plus Spoek Mathambo, Tumi, and DJ Cleo. What we like about this collab is that it features different artists and musicians from a variety of competing countries, so you can get a sense of the cultural vibe among the teams on the field. You can download Episode 5 here.

Full Bleed
Great title for a New York City Skateboard Photography book. Just released by Powerhouse, Full Bleed captures the constant motion of skating in the Big Apple. The book features a retrospective spanning over 30 years of skateboarding in the city, including a diverse group of skaters and photographers. The difference with this type of book is that it shows real urban street skating vs. polished skate park style. It’s the grit and street art backgrounds, massive staircases and skyscrapers, including the two World Trade Centers, fast skating behind cabs, cars, trucks as a mode of transportation, or on crappy homemade half vert ramps that really tell an interesting story behind the scene. Of course the first book release is available at concept store colette in Paris starting this month.

Photos from Full Bleed.

Label Networks Presents at Outdoor Retailer
On Tuesday, August 3, Label Networks will be presenting at the Outdoor Retailer show on “Youth Culture Sports: New Lifestyle Trends from Crossover Subcultures.” Today%uFFFDs street-savvy youth culture market of 13-25-year-olds in the USA has re-defined the meaning of living an active lifestyle. From changes in the meaning of “sports” to participation levels and new inspiration behind specific activities, plus the crossover effects from fashion, technology, and music, the industry is changing dramatically. Topics covered include youth sporting trends including participation and sports young people “most want to learn,” plus trends emerging from the most influential landscapes: technology internet, music, fashion, and DIY aesthetics. Speaker: Kathleen Gasperini–Editor and Co-founder, Label Networks, Inc. Location: Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010 at the Downtown Marriott, located directly across the street from the Salt Palace Convention Center. Date: Tuesday, August 3, 2010 from 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. in Salon D.

Label Networks%uFFFD Presentation at Outdoor Retailer will feature some fresh data from the upcoming Summer Study to be released next week.

Action Sports Conference Round 2
Presented by Group Y, the network for action sports and youth marketing industry players, this will be the second Action Sports Conference hosted by the group. Topics include many of the hottest issues surrounding the industry today. Location is Huntington Beach, Hyatt Regency, August 4th. This is the week of Agenda and the finals of the U.S. Open of Surfing. Speakers and topics can be found here.

Agenda Goes to Anaheim
It was inevitable that with the growth of Agenda, the streetwear, action sports-inspired fashion and footwear trade show, that they would probably outgrow their space in the Hyatt Regency in Huntington Beach. While they will remain there for the summer show, the upcoming January show including Agenda Snow and Agenda Garage (moto) will be in Anaheim, CA at the Marriot January 6-7, 2011.

Upcoming for Agenda also is the NYC show July 19-20 at the Chelsea Art Museum, which coincides with Men’s Market Week.

In other trade show news, Bright, another action sports-inspired, streetwear show, will open its doors in Berlin right during the same timeframe as Bread & Butter later this week starting July 8th-10th. Bright has already snagged a few brands that used to showcase at B&B, although B&B remains a significantly strong show for the industry, especially those that want to get out of the action sports classification and move more towards designer, denim, upper urbanwear.

Bright also announced several skateboarding activities including a demo by the Nike SB US Team in Berlin featuring P-Rod, Eric Koston, Omar Salazar, and others. They’re also hosting a best trick contest at the show on Saturday.

This is the same timeframe that Tony Hawk and Friends will be doing a show in Berlin sponsored by Quiksilver.

Retail News
Finally, in retail news, Billabong has bought the Canadian retailer West 49 and all 138 stores for $83.2 million Canadian; Spy Optics’ Orange 21 has launched a music division with Fran Richards at the helm; and adidas Originals has launched a denim collection for spring/summer 2011 including skinny and relaxed fits for guys and boyfriend and skinny silhouettes for women. They will debut their denim collection in Berlin at Bread & Butter July 7-9.