We are fortunate here in Portland, OR to have a thriving community of some really interesting and capable manipulators of steel, shape and speed. But, I imagine that if we were to do a clean extract of the Portland builders scene and drop it on the edge of New York’s Central Park that it might be the vinegar that never really mixes in NYC’s oil. However, after seeing America’s ‘melting pot’ first-hand last week’s exhibition opening of BESPOKE: The Handbuilt Bicycle, it’s very clear that hand-made bicycles—and their makers—are a refreshing and inspiring ‘medium’ for a wide range of bicycle and art enthusiasts.
Not wanting to marginalize the centerpiece(s) of the attraction at all—the bikes are incredible—what I found myself excited by was the cases filled with pieces taken from each of the builders’ workshops. The bicycles are flush with the personality and attitude of their maker, but getting a further glimpse via the personal bits they chose to share was really interesting.
Rapha is pleased to have been invited by the curators, Michael Maharam and Sacha White, to be involved with BESPOKE. In the hand-made spirit of and to commemorate the exhibition, we have made a limited batch of Brushed Camel Hair Maraham Caps
BESPOKE: The Handbuilt Bicycle
May 13 – August 15, 2010
Museum of Arts and Design
2 Columbus Circle
New York City