Bike Art: Kathleen King

There’s precious little art devoted to cycling. Contrast that with all the incredible surf-related art and its enough to chafe you like 200 miles in an un-creamed leather chamois. I keep my eye out for any sort of bike art as a result. Recently, the work of artist Kathleen King came to my attention. She’s a trained artist who has an incredible range.

Given the way artists and writers have to do backflips to find homes for our work, she is a kindred spirit for me. Judging from the murals and other commissions she has received, I’d like her work even if she didn’t do cycling-related work, but her cycling work holds a special appeal for me.

I’ve been attempting to do a post on her for some months; something always seems to get in the way. Finally, we have the perfect occasion: Kathleen is at the USA Pro Challenge. She’ll be following the race and doing chalk art on the course at various points. Better yet, she’ll be showing her work at the Kamruz Galler in Telluride and will be at the gallery in-person on Monday. If you happen to be following the race, drop by and check out her work.

Much of what King is known for are what she calls her bike “scribbles.” The spirals and eccentric, nested ovals possess a very kinetic look and despite the highly abstracted appearance of her work, it really seems to capture the essence of a bike in motion. The piece above was her first in this style and carries the very apt title, “1 km.” I dig that.

Check out this YouTube video of Kathleen doing chalk bike scribbles at the Amgen Tour of California. Pretty killer temporary art.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLL94Dys7Mo

 

And if you’re in Telluride visit the Kamruz Gallery:  www.kamruz.com

333 W. Colorado Ave. Telluride CO 303-442-7790

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5 comments

  1. scaredskinnydog

    Thats Rad! I’m going to look for her work out on the course. If any aspiring artists want to stop by “Camp Jens” and put your talents to work on a cardboard sign for the riders feel free. We’ll have cardboard and paint to spare(and lots of beer). Cheers!

  2. Jasper Gates

    I like it! Thanks for putting me on to King’s work. However, I would respectfully beg to differ with Padraig’s opening statement about bike art being scarce. I think there’s a long and vibrant tradition of it, going back to the posters of the 1890s, the paintings of the Futurists in the 1910s (King’s work reminds me of Boccioni’s “Dynamism of Cyclist”), Picasso’s Bull’s Head, etc. These days, I see more and more bike art everywhere, from recycled bike-part jewelry to folk art to funky bike-parking art. Bicycles as objet d’art–King and others are on to something.

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