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Corpse Corps Boards

Coffin shaped skateboards from an artist-run company living to skate and die

by Graham Hiemstra in Design on 27 October 2011

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Inspired by the gritty streets of NYC and the raw style borne from them, Corpse Corps Boards makes coffin-shaped skateboards fit for the cutthroat mentality of East Coast skating. Founders and lifelong skateboarders Drew McKenzie and Jordan Walczak understand the need to make a product strong enough to hold up to the daily abuse of skateboarding. From its humble beginnings as a DIY art project in McKenzie's Manhattan apartment, Corpse Corps Boards has evolved into a full-fledged skateboard company now making two sizes of decks and a small run of high-quality softgoods.

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Not just another cruiser board, these shred-sleds are meant to be skated—case in point, the images of McKenzie killing it. Available in two sizes—9" and 10"—with the perfect amount of concave, each deck is made with pure hard rock American maple. The standard 9" deck is produced on the East Coast with wood sourced from the same legendary distributor that supplied Blockhead Skateboards and JFA in the mid-'80s and early '90s. These 7-ply hand-screen-printed decks retain the general dimensions of a standard skateboard—31.5" from nose to tail for plenty of pop.

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In an effort to establish an artists' network of sorts, Corpse Corps Boards' 10" decks are created in collaboration with local artists, graffiti writers, punk band members and all-around creative types who run the same seedy streets. Each board is cut, shaped and painted by hand in Brooklyn. Like all Corpse Corps Boards these individually-crafted decks are meant to be shredded, designed to the same length and concave as the 9" board. In order to preserve the one-of-a-kind artwork, even after a good thrashing, each deck is coated in polyurethane.

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To celebrate the official launch of Corpse Corps Boards the minds behind the company are curating a group exhibition featuring hand-painted decks by some of NYC's most influential artists. "Open Casket" opens Friday 28 October with a party at Lower East Side's Coat of Arms, showcasing original works from the likes of Nicholas Gazin, Greg Mishka, Bill Connors (top left) and many more.

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"Open Casket" runs through 7 November 2011 and all custom-painted decks will be auctioned off after the opening party tomorrow night. Standard 9" decks sell for $55 while the hand-painted 10" decks go for $88—not bad for an original work of art. To purchase head to Corpse Corps Boards' online store.

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