Born To Be Wild: Adventures In The Art of Motorcycle Design

On November 2nd I will be going to the Born To Be Wild exhibit at the Reading Public Museum in Reading, PA. Weather permitting I will lead a ride to the museum for First State HOG. If the weather is not permitting we will travel by cage. Keep an eye out for my pictures and review on the motorcycle design exhibit. 

October 3, 2008 – January 4, 2009

For nearly a century, the motorcycle has been an icon for innovation in design and engineering. More than any other form of transportation, it has come to symbolize the concept of freedom, and this freedom has been an engine of creativity in design.The sheer beauty of the best-designed motorcycles reminds us that motorcycle design is as much about the human spirit as speed and performance. It is about the edge of wildness that lurks within and that can break out with a motorcycle designed to liberate our wilder side.

This exhibition will examine the art and design of the motorcycle through the lens of classic and contemporary cycles. Forty-five motorcycles will be exhibited including two of the most famous of all time: the Captain America chopper and Billy Bike featured in the 1969 film, Easy Rider. They headline a section of the exhibition featuring early choppers of the 1960s and ‘70s.

The latest generation of choppers is represented by cycles designed by some of the most creative contemporary designers in the United States. These cycles includes the iconic, two engine Two Bad 2 designed by the legendary California designer, Arlen Ness.

Part of the exhibition is devoted to classic, historic motorcycles of the first half of the 20th century. Among the highlights is a selection of Indian motorcycles celebrated for their design sophistication and include the 1948 Indian Chief featured in the groundbreaking 1998 Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum exhibition, Art of the Motorcycle. In addition, Reading’s own motorcycle company, the Reading Standard, is featured and includes a rare 1905 model, one of the earliest motorcycles ever manufactured.

The exhibition explores international motorcycle design, featuring British and Italian motorcycles. Contemporary Italian MV Augustas and classic British motorcycles, including a 1954 Vincent Black Shadow and 1957 BSA Gold Star, are exhibited in pristine condition. Harley-Davidson motorcycles also play a prominent role in the show and include historic police motorcycles and a classic 1958 calypso red and white DuoGlide with side car.

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