2013 Motorcycles as Art Exhibit – “Ton Up! – Speed, Style and Cafe Racer Culture” at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip Focuses on Origins of Popular Café Racer Movement
(Sturgis, South Dakota) – The Sturgis Buffalo Chip® announces the annual “Motorcycles as Art” exhibit titled “Ton Up! – Speed, Style and Cafe Racer Culture” taking place during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally this summer, will focus on the origins and continued popularity of the Café Racer movement worldwide. The exhibition will be open August 3 – 9, 2013, is located next to the east gate of the Buffalo Chip and offers free admission to the public and Buffalo Chip guests.
Co-curators Michael Lichter and Paul d’Orléans have assembled a comprehensive display of 32 machines from 12 makes and 6 decades, plus never-published photography from the original café racing scene in 1960s England to the present, art by Triumph ‘resident artist’ Conrad Leach, oil paintings by Guenevere Schwien, images from the Ace Café Collection, vintage leather ‘Rocker’ jackets from the Lewis Leathers archive, the “One-Show” 21-helmets display of custom painted helmets, paintings by Andrea Chiaravalli and photography by Erick Runyon with other artists to be announced.
Each year, the “Motorcycles as Art” exhibition garners tremendous media coverage from around the globe, and thousands of enthusiasts in person. This year’s exhibition will get even more recognition as it will live on in the coffee-table book “Ton Up – Speed, Style and Cafe Racer Culture,” published by Motorbooks International. Michael Lichter will photograph all the motorcycles in his Sturgis studio for the book, which will also include the jackets, artwork, and photographs from the exhibit. Paul d’Orléans’ is writing a comprehensive history of the Café Racer movement for the book; from its deep origins in speed-modified road bikes from the ‘Teens, to the ‘classic’ period in England in the 1950s/60s, through its various resurrections in the 1970s, 80s, and especially, with the advent of Internet motorcycle blogs, TV shows, and ‘Café Racer’ magazines, the explosive popularity of the style in the 21st Century.
The show looked great, and the bikes assembled were very cool indeed. Some of them may become paintings in the future. I feel so honored to be part of this awesome show and can’t wait for the book to come out. I’m so grateful to Michael Lichter for inviting me to be part of such a great collection.