When paddleboards become canvas for artistic expression, remarkable things happen. The latest release from the Swiss watersport company, Indiana Paddle & Surf – a limited edition of iSUPs designed with a Zürich-based tattoo artist Patrick Müller – is perfectly aligned with the brand’s philosophy encapsulating themes of curiosity, courage, balance and deep connection between humans and nature.
“The design is very energetic and every time I’m paddling, I see new aspects of the design and really feel that connection that inspired Pat. It’s an incredible design, that only deserved the best materials and features. An inflatable board that gets as close as it gets to a hardboard SUP,” commented Claudio Laible of Indiana. “Therefore, especially the 12’6 and 14’0 are made for ambitious paddlers that are looking for a fast and high performing board for longer touring trips.“
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TotalSUP caught up with Pat, multidisciplinary artist and a tattoo studio owner, to chat about this exciting collaboration and his vision behind this unique board collection.
All images courtesy of Claudio Laible and Philipp Bühler / Indiana Paddle & Surf
Hi Pat welcome to TotalSUP! Could you tell us more about your artistic background and what drives your work?
My story as an artist actually began with my apprenticeship as a stone sculptor. As a child, I had an unbroken fascination and connection to nature from an early age. I was not only inspired by nature, such as forests and water, but also to creating things with natural materials. Who am I as an artist? I guess, I keep re-answering this question day after day, again and again. I would not describe myself as exactly THIS or THAT type of artist. My art grows with me as a human being. A few years ago, I created entire paintings out of trash, transformed my customers’ wishes into tattoo art with my style and ran two tattoo studios.
Now my path as an artist has led me to turn even more inward and to surrender myself to my impulse. My tattoos and artwork have grown into power tattoos and soul art pieces. I now combine art with consciousness. My tattoo studio in Bremgarten (AG) is small but nice and it’s an oasis of creativity for me. But since I also love to be on the road and to connect tattoos with the power of nature, I love visiting my customers at home with my “Ink on wheels” or to drive to a special place of power for them.
Could you tell us more about your collaboration with Indiana Paddle & Surf?
I’ve known Indiana for a while. We were neighbours so to say, when I still had a studio in Wädenswil. That’s how we got to know each other. Our last collaboration together was during the “Clean Water Day”. Trash was collected from Lake Zurich and I created a piece of art out of it. Since I am an artist at heart and a professional white water SUP rider, they asked me to design the 2022 limited edition collection.
As I love water and watersports, I knew that it would be a wonderful combination of my two passions. To create the designs and combine art with the element of water was a huge honour and great pleasure for me.
What was the vision behind this limited edition Indiana SUP design?
I try to authentically bring my art from the inside out and let myself be guided by my life. My family and especially my children shape this formation of my creative self. I often find my inspiration in connecting with wonderful nature and its remarkable processes and energies.
The very special inspiration in this limited-edition is the connection of soul, body and spirit. It is important to me to reunite the human being and nature. And as I mentioned, through the designs I was able to merge my love of water and art on one board.
What’s your favourite Indiana set up?
My favourite board is Indiana 12‘6 Touring LTD Inflatable with the Indiana carbon fibreglass 3-piece paddle. When it comes to white water it’s the Indiana 9‘0 River Inflatable.
Image source: Patrick Müller
Congratulations on this beautiful collab and thank you for your time!
Follow Pat’s work on Instagram or visit www.freak-tattoo.ch
*All images courtesy of Claudio Laible and Philipp Bühler / Indiana Paddle & Surf