Thursday, November 5, 2009

Paul Frankowski, documenting working sail

Ganges Bhur

Thames barge Blackwater Essex

Koga in The English Channel

Fishing boat, Porquerelles

Loading caique

sail of dhow

helming dhow

Align CenterJahazi dhow hold

pasanger dhow Zanzibar

Zanzibar fishing dhow

Zanzibar harbour

Sail Ship KOGA

Align CenterZanzibar Jahazi

cargo freighter sail boat dhow Perahu Boutre sloop

Lambo Perahu in Bira

Lambo Perahu Makassar

Haitian cargo vessel in Nassau harbour

Haitian fraighter

Haitian sloop

Align CenterHaitian sloop

Align CenterHaitian sloop

Haitian sloop full loaded deck

Haitian sloop in Nassau

working sloops from Haiti

all photos and captions courtesy Paul Frankowski

(I have made some slight edits to the captions)

I was contacted by a young sailor, Paul Frankowski, who urged me to write about Hans Klaar and his rather amazing endeavors. I have been aware of Hans Klaar for some time and there is some info on him and his proa accessible through the Arpex site. There had been, until recently, far more info on Hans but it has seemingly been removed. I love Hans' story, but I was arrested by a footnote to Paul's email , giving me a link to his Flickr postings. With further correspondence more of Paul's own story emerged. Paul has been tracking working sail in out of the way places and has some meaty evidence of his research. He's a fairly interesting specimen himself, to boot.

Born in Poland, he immigrated to the UK in 1995 after learning to sail on the Baltic in what he terms "the tough school sailing world of a communist regime," where he was denied entry to foreign ports. He's made his way by working as a builder and was inspired by Clifford Hawkins' The Dhow, and the book and film of The Last Sailor, by Neil Hollander and Harald Mertes to document indigenous working sail, or as he puts it, cargo ships.

After a visit to the Mediterranean, where he experienced the local ciaques, he sailed to Tanzania and Zanzibar where he managed to sail on a Jahazi, an indigenous dhow, and reports "it was like to be back in Vasco da Gamma times (with) no radio, no life preservers and so on." Next he went to Indonesia where he sailed a Lambo Perahus, a type of Günter sloop. Lately he's been to the Bahamas to document the Haitian sloop - certainly a lot of adventures. There is also a photo of an Indian dhow on the Ganges, so I would assume... ?

Paul has also published two articles about these craft in Polish sailing magazines. His next research landfalls would be to Brazil to sail Saveiros and to Madagascar where there are still plenty of cargo schooners, Gaolettes and dhows. I am hoping for the best of luck for Paul and the book he's writing on this subject.


Unknown said...

This is interesting.I really enjoyed looking at the Haitian boats. Notice the masts?

Dave Coulter said...

I saw a TV show about a Tanzanian soccer team - mainly fisherman for their real jobs - that featured a lot of footage about dhows!

ccoh said...

Great piece about someone doing some valuable field work. Great shots too.

Far de la Banya said...

Great photos and contrasts !

will said...

fantastic fotos of some esoteric (to north american eyes) boats.

bowsprite said...

mmmm, I am feeling a great urge to caress those sparse silhouettes with pen and, are they poetic, beautiful.