Camper joins with Emirates Team New Zealand in the Volvo Ocean Race

CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand in the Volvo Ocean Race

As Sydney’s Interational Boat Show launches in July 2011, a Spanish shoe brand is preparing to set sail around Europe on board it’s Brand new vessel, CAMPER.

CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand is the first Volvo Open 70 that has been launched for the 2011/12 Volvo Ocean Race. Australian Skipper Chris Nicholson took the yacht for its first sail in the Hauraki Gulf in New Zealand in April 2011, with the boat and crew scheduled to return to the shores of Auckland on the eighth leg of the round-the-world race, docking in the New Zealand city from 8 – 18 March 2012.

The ‘christening’ of CAMPER in New Zealand waters was the first opportunity to see the yacht’s full design; her striking graphics are from the pen of world leading British studio Farrow. Their projects have gained worldwide acclaim, and Creative Director Mark Farrow is considered to be one of the most important graphic designers working today.

The graphic design of a 70’ ocean going yacht is a massive departure for the studio. Best known for contemporary music packaging, Farrow has a long-standing creative partnership with Pet Shop Boys and Spiritualized, and previous clients include Factory Records, the Haçienda, Kylie Minogue, and Manic Street Preachers. Farrow also has an extensive body of work across a broad spectrum of clients including Levi’s, Harvey Nichols, and the Science Museum, and he has now joined an array of creative individuals who have collaborated with Camper across various projects. 

“This is an amazing project and one of those that, as a team of graphic designers, you dream of being involved in.  To be given a canvas of a hundred foot tall masts and a seventy-foot carbon-fibre boat is very, very special!  In Camper we have found a creative kindred spirit who has been totally receptive to our ideas and who has pushed us creatively more than most clients, which is refreshing to say the least.” stated Mark Farrow.

Part of the inspiration for the design is taken from ‘dazzle painting’, a paint scheme extensively used on battle ships during World War One. Drawing inspiration from abstract artists, dazzle ships were composed of a complex pattern of geometric shapes, interrupting and intersecting each other.

“Everything that you need is within the Camper logo. When you start working with it you instantly start to get a feel of sails… so we started developing patterns for each individual sail using only the Camper bridge. With each sail combination, a different pattern emerges. Hopefully as the boat is sailing around the world you’ll see all these different versions. It will be forever changing and shifting.  It is a complicated process to arrive at something that works. I really cannot wait to see it on the water,” concluded Farrow.

But the graphics are just one side of the story.  For the past 12 months a core group of people from Emirates Team New Zealand has been working hard to ensure that the build has been kept on time, and on budget. CAMPER’s first sail in April marked a much-anticipated return of what is regarded as the world’s best sailing team, to offshore sailing. 

CAMPER is now in European waters, preparing for various public outings before the official start of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011/12; including sailing through London’s Tower Bridge in September, and visiting Camper’s historical home of Mallorca.