Culture

INTERVIEW: Leticia Bufoni on Skating Over a Dinosaur at the Natural History Museum

Alongside Belgian olympian Lore Bruggeman and Argentina’s Aldana Bertran.

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At a special night at the museum, Red Bull skaters Leticia Bufoni, Lore Bruggeman and Aldana Bertran became the first individuals to skate inside the Natural History Museum in London.

With the expertise of skatepark designer Joe Ciaglia, the museum’s notable exhibitions underwent an overnight transformation into skate-friendly zones while, Margie Didal, a skateboarding legend, joined the trio of skaters uncovering one-of-a-kind skate spots from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Documented in partnership with Canon, the unique skate session saw the athletes conquering benches in Minerals Hall, showcasing their skills on the museum entrance’s rails and freestyling around a tank housing a crocodile. As a grand finale, the team constructed a massive ramp down the main stairs of Hintze Hall, where Bufoni kick-flipped over a velociraptor skeleton.

Read below to hear from the six-time X-Games Gold Medalist about her night at the museum.

Was there a pivotal moment where you knew you wanted pursue skating professionally?
I was nine years old when I started skating and just fell in love with it from the moment I touched my first skateboard. I was learning the skate tricks a lot faster than the boys in my neighborhood and spent all of my free time pushing myself to do more.

Being the only girl skating made it difficult at times starting out and even my dad was hesitant – he cut my skateboard in half to stop me practicing! But he soon realized nothing could stop my love and talent for skating, so he took me to my first ever competition, which I went on to win at age 11.

Winning Gold at my first X Games in 2018 was a huge moment in my career as it’s a competition I had been set on and working towards for years. Winning made me realize that all of the hard work and training leading up to it was totally worth it. It’s still such an awesome memory in my career.

Leticia Bufoni Natural History Museum Skate Skating Red Bull Canon

Tell us about your experience bringing this activation to life. What was the most surprising part about the journey?

When I first got a call from Red Bull telling me about the project and that we would be skateboarding inside The Natural History Museum, I just couldn’t believe how crazy the idea was.

I was amazed by everything that was around us in the museum and when we started putting the project together I knew it was going to be one of the coolest things I’ve ever done in my career. I wanted to do my best and make the most awesome content possible in the iconic museum – especially as these locations are totally impossible to skate on a normal occasion.

The most surprising part of the project was definitely kickflipping over the dinosaur. I’ve obviously never jumped over anything like that before, so it was an incredible life opportunity from Red Bull – it was my favorite trick!
Leticia Bufoni Natural History Museum Skate Skating Red Bull Canon

You mentioned being scared to break anything in the museum, how did the unique venue influence your style and tricks on the night?

I couldn’t believe we were going to be able to skate inside the Museum – everything is just so valuable.

We’d planned the tricks for months, especially the kickflip over the dinosaur as it was the largest one of the shoot. I was unsure if I was going to be able to do it because we didn’t know how the ramp leading down to it was going to work or the size of the dinosaur, so I just had to prepare as much as I could. It took me a little while to learn the kickflip in this environment and I felt really sore the next day, but it was totally worth it.
Leticia Bufoni Natural History Museum Skate Skating Red Bull Canon

Do you feel a growing merge between sport and art+design communities? How do you think this will evolve in the future?

Art brings communities of people together which for skateboarding, is a huge part of the sport and it’s been amazing to see the two merge via Red Bull’s Skate the Museum. There’s so much more to skateboarding than just competitions, so it was very cool to get to tell this story at such an iconic location with my friend Margie and two skaters Lore and Aldana who have been getting better and better these last couple of years.
Leticia Bufoni Natural History Museum Skate Skating Red Bull Canon
For the last night of the project, we got to hang out with local female skate communities and it was so cool. I have been coming to London for years and never met that many girls in the skating scene here. I hope with this project, we can get even more girls into skating.

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