We believe our ocean is precious, it’s part of our identity and should be shared and enjoyed for generations – that’s why we’re proud to support LegaSea, an organisation campaigning to restore the abundance, biodiversity, and health of New Zealand’s marine environment.

We’ve been working with LegaSea for four years as a platinum sponsor supplying LegaSea with their official supporter’s product. We are super stoked to now be the exclusive stockists of their gear and making the range accessible across the country in our stores and online.

 This year we’ve teamed up with artists from Aotearoa – Otis Frizzell, Rachel Lee, and Blake Gordon to design a limited run of printed tees. Proceeds from the full Barkers x LegaSea range, which includes your trusty Amphibians, towels, caps and a hoodie will go towards the continuation of LegaSea’s important work.

 We spoke to the artists on the eve of our collection launch to hear more about why they, like us, back LegaSea.

 

 OTIS FRIZZELL

Being kiwi’s, we all have a connection to the sea, and we all have a part to play when it comes to looking after the abundance of our oceans, what is it about LegaSea’s efforts that drew you in to design the prints and support them?

 “I get approached by charities and causes every day and it can be hard to navigate, so in the end, I kinda had to choose which ones mean the most to me. I am a water baby, and LOVE kai moana, so it follows that I can really get behind LegaSea’s efforts to try and restore the health and abundance of Aotearoa’s oceans”.

 What was the approach to your designs?

 “I thought it was a great opportunity to introduce an educational angle into some of the designs and bring some Te Reo to the project. For example, the crayfish graphic says kōura with an illustration of a crayfish… Hopefully people will see the image and go, Oh! Kōura means crayfish!”.

  

 BLAKE GORDON

What was your inspiration behind your prints?

 “I was lucky enough to have grown up in the Bay of Islands, exploring the area on my folks Young 88 was a huge part of my upbringing. Through the years I remember noticing the effect of humans on the ocean and ocean life, taking only what you needed was always something we practiced. I remember literally seeing the effects of scallop dredging whilst free diving for scallops and being frustrated at a young age with its impacts on the ocean floor.

 My inspiration for the designs came directly from childhood memories. Dad free diving for crayfish, their spiky exterior is incredible. It was always an interesting experience being on the receiving end of being handed a cray whilst in a small inflatable dingy. I remember sailing past huge boil ups watching in awe as hundreds of gannets dive into the ocean catching their dinner, they're such powerful birds.”

 

 RACHEL LEE

I wanted to illustrate the strong mana of Aotearoa wildlife by drawing native birds and fish. Each line, etching and colour has followed one stroke after another, because I believe small things make up something great. 

 Much like the efforts in protecting our land, we all need to play our part whether it be small or big. It all counts to create something magical for generations to come.”

 Tell us what is it about LegaSea’s efforts that drew you in to design the prints and support them?

 “I first came across LegaSea’s article to ban bottom trawling through an article not so long ago, a coalition of like-minded groups coming together for one cause. This kind of magic happens in my art all the time, like the ones you see.

 Every feather, scale and detail come together as one to create something so precious, in harmony.

 I see LegaSea's accomplishments as each dot and line of a greater painting that we will paint together. With that in mind, if my painting can help draw the attention of others to think deeper about our shores, it could be the start of something great.”

 

Fishing is a kiwi lifestyle - we fish to put food on the table, nourish our family, socialise with our friends, celebrate our cultural foundations, and connect with the sea. With an every-person-counts mentality, LegaSea is currently campaigning for a reform to the Quota Management System to ban coastal trawling so every Kiwi can enjoy a healthier marine environment. You can sign the petition here: https://rescuefish.co.nz/petition/

 

Check out the full range instore and online now.