Handbuilt bicycles in New York City's MAD museum

Six renowned designers display bikes as art

Six of the world’s leading bicycle craftsmen hand built the twenty-one machines that are now display at the Bespoke: The Handbuilt Bicycle Exhibit held at the Museum of Art and Design from 13 May to 15 August in New York City.

This is the first time the museum has displayed bicycles as an art form and they are expecting a large audience this summer, according to Dorothy Twining Globus, Curator of Exhibitions.

“We are interested in any subject that has to do with art, craft and design,” Twining Globus said. “These Handbuilt bicycles are a wonderful combination of all three.”

Michael Maharam, a New York entrepreneur and bicycle collector teamed up with Sacha White, a bicycle builder, as guest curators for the show and were largely responsible for selecting the six internationally recognized handbuilt bicycle designers who’s bikes are currently on display.

“They went for a range of bicycle types that demonstrated the highest levels of craftsmanship without forsaking innovation,” Twining Globus said. “We only have these six designers in the exhibition, but we will also have bike-related programs which will include other designers.”

Several pieces of White’s own Portland-based Vanilla Bicycles collection will be on display along with Mike Flanigan from Alternative Needs Transportation from Holliston, Massachusetts; Jeff Jones from Jeff Jones Custom Bicycles in Medford, Oregon; Dario Pegoretti from Pegoretti Cicli in Caldonazzo, Italy; Richard Sachs from Richard Sachs Cycles in Warwick, Massachusetts and Peter Weigle from JP Weigle Cycles in Lyme, Connecticut.

“We definitely anticipate a large and enthusiastic crowd for this show,” she added. “We have had steady inquiries as the press has gone out and we know there is a huge audience for anything to do with bicycles.”

The Museum of Art and Design held a successful premier viewing for the Bespoke: The Handbuilt Bicycle exhibit Thursday May 13. “The opening and the dinner was a real wonderful event with over 500 guests attending,” said Heidi Riegler of the Museum of Art and Design.

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