bespoke: the handbuild bicycle bespoke: the handbuild bicycle
may 29, 2010

bespoke: the handbuild bicycle

‘bespoke: the handbuild bicycle’ museum of arts and design, new york may 13 – aug 15, 2010

‘vanilla bicycles’ by sacha white image © d. james dee

‘bespoke: the handbuilt bicycle’, presented by the museum of arts and design, displays the designs of six bicycle builders whose work in metal, graphics and artifacts, helped elucidate this craft.

‘vanilla bicycles’ by sacha white image © vanilla bicycles

the craft of custom bicycle building involves master metalwork: bending, welding, carving and wrapping steel, titanium, aluminum and carbon. a graphic artist’s eye is required in the application of paint and decorative flourishes. whereas several varieties of artisan may be involved in manufacturing a factory-made bicycle, the custom models exhibited in ‘bespoke’ were the productions of individuals.   despite the seemingly simplistic forms and mechanics, the exhibited bicycles offered a unique challenge to their makers. rider and machine meet at three contact points—saddle, handlebar, and pedal. this degree of integration, compared with that involved in almost any other type of sporting equipment, from soccer balls to sailboats, leaves greater risk of poor performance and discomfort if the connection between body and bicycle is not seamless.  thus, the participating custom builder’s chief preoccupation was therefore with fit; simply taking a rider’s measurements required more than two hours for a single commission. every bicycle was a piece of engineering.

‘vanilla bicycles’ by sacha white image © vanilla bicycles

pegoretti cicli by dario pegoretti image © dario pegoretti

pegoretti cicli by dario pegoretti image © dario pegoretti

‘ANT’ by mike flanagan image ©  d. james dee

‘jeff jones custom bicycles’ by jeff jones image ©  d. james dee

‘jeff jones custom bicycles’ by jeff jones image c jeff jones custom bicycles

‘jeff jones custom bicycles’ by jeff jones image © jeff jones custom bicycles

‘richard sachs cycles’ by richard sachs image © richard sachs cycles

‘richard sachs cycles’ by richard sachs image ©  d. james dee

seoul cycle design competition 2010

currently, seoul design foundation together with designboom are hosting seoul cycle design competition 2010. once considered a ‘hard’ city, seoul is making strides toward becoming a ‘soft’ city by embracing design concepts that will redefine its urban environment with an emphasis on themes centering on green, blue, history and human. the seoul cycle design competition will be held under the theme, ‘cycling with design: seoul style,’ and is part of seoul’s city-wide effort at improving its design brand and image. the primary goal of the competition is to help build a design oriented city that focuses on its people. the competition is divided into three categories: cycle design, cycle fashion & accessories design, and cycling infrastructure. all three categories emphasize environment-friendly ideas, with the hope that the contest will contribute to establishing a healthier cycling culture.

registration is currently open. to learn more about the competition and to enroll, see here.

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