Custom painted Specialized Shiv by Kristian Von Hornsleth

One-off creation from Danish artist

Custom paintwork is a great way to make your bike stand out from the crowd, but few bikes stand out quite as much as this custom-painted creation from Danish conceptual artist Kristian Von Hornsleth.


The unusual piece was created after triathlete and Hornsleth fan, Rasmus Nielsen, pitched the idea of painting his Specialized Shiv time trial frame to the artist. Hornsleth agreed and the bike was delivered to Copenhagen to receive its one-off paintjob.

Beneath the vivid paint is a frame that’s always stood out in its own right. Nielsen’s Shiv is in fact a prototype that was purchased from Danish triathlete Rasmus Henning, and originally distinguished from production bikes with a unique all-black finish and GXP crankset.

The Hornsleth Shiv isn’t destined for a museum any time soon – instead Nielsen plans to ride the bike, complete with its fresh Lightweight Autobahn Schwarz edition wheelset, at several of this year’s Ironman events.

The paintjob is definitely going to split opinion: the paintjob is definitely going to split opinion
Henrik Olesen

The paintjob is definitely going to split opinions

Hornsleth is no stranger to making vehicles his canvas. His portfolio includes several exotic cars such as a graffiti-inspired Lamborghini Countach and even Ducati motorcycles. The artist was also behind the controversial Hornsleth Village Project.


Although the aesthetics are bound to split opinion, this bike is a dream come true for its owner and there’s no question that it is one very special Shiv.