Surf Bathing Lahaina 1855

Water Colour by James Gay Sawkins (1806-1878)

Bathing scene, Lahaina, Maui. Water colour. 1855. James Gay Sawkins. A very rare image that illustrates both canoe and board surf-riding, with several sailing canoes in the background. Although the riders positioning is unfortunate, this is typical of many images of this period. The activity is communal, with small prone boards on a small left-hand break close to shore. The board-riders appear to be female, note the swimmer in the right foreground who has her breasts covered. This possibly indicates the image as an authentic report, whereas some images significantly detail this feature.