A friendship of art and bikes

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When the world is getting crazy about healthy lifestyle and planet saving, bicycles invade our lives, change daily routines and more often become the main vehicle on the way to work, school or ride around the city. These two-wheel vehicles are certainly a big thing now. What could we get when combining them with art? Beautiful beautiful things as you can guess.

For its 100th anniversary, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (MIA) collaborated with the bicycles making company “Handsome Cycles” and with a help of  creative agencies “Knock” and “Treat and company”  have brought the works of art into a new dimension. The result is three famous MIA paintings translated into bicycles: all absolutely different, unique and very artistic.

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“The MIA is excited to partner with “Handsome Cycles”, a company that shares the museum’s commitment to embracing the locals and integrating great design, technology and experimentation while staying true to its core values and community,” said Hunter Wright, MIA’s Venture Innovation Director. Including paintings by Claude Monet and Frank Stella and the 1948 Tatra T87 sedan, all three bicycles reflect masterpieces of the MIA’s permanent collection. When designing versatile and classically designed bicycles “Handsome Cycles” aims to encourage everyone to get out and ride. Their new aim this time was to deepen peoples’ connection with their community, art and design through cycling.

The first Art Bike was inspired by Hans Ledwinka’s Tatra T-87 Sedan, designed in 1963. The piece is a nice blend featuring past and modern details. For this bicycle, the creators set out to capture the curvature of the iconic feat of design, which was finally finished off with a honey saddle and bar tape to match the cars striking interior.

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The bicycle inspired by Claude Monet’s Grainstack, “Sun in the Mist” as the artists say, was a real challenge. The bike is kept intentionally simplistic to highlight the complexity of the paint, while only adding elements that enhance its rural and natural feel.

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A play with color, lines and circles is mirrored in the third and undoubtedly the most fun piece of “Handsome Cycles” collection. For this bicycle inspired by brightly colored  Frank Stella’s painting, “Tahkt-i-Sulayman”, Variation II, the artists looked to capture the essence of the painting in his simplistic approach.  Stella says meaning of his work is purely formal: “My painting is based on the fact that only what can be seen there is there. It really is an object. You can see the whole idea without any confusion. What you see is what you see.”

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