Sunday, February 7, 2010

Bicycle Messengers and Their Art

A long time ago!

Over the years I have  crossed paths with quite a few Artists who also happen to be avid Cyclists.
Back in the 80's, in the early days of the Bicycle Messenger Business, almost everyone was also an artist or musician.

Somehow I've stayed in touch with them.  I got the IDEA to  profile of some of the Artist/Riders/Messengers that shared the wild rides surfing the NYC Gridlock.
Being a Bicycle Messenger is a tough gig that might take the guts of a Philip Petit.  How many riders have what it takes to go blasting through bumper to bumper NYC traffic to make a delivery?  Is it for money, the passion or the incredible adrenaline rush?
I'm still not sure.

A few pieces  have ended up in my hands.This is one of them.

´´La muerte en bicicleta´
by Hamlet Zurita

Hi Shelly,
Heres the deal...
I´ve been a cyclist
since 1974.I do lots of cycling every day,I even go to bed on my
bike.On the art,called ´´La muerte en bicicleta´´or death on a  bike
is a commentary about the dangers of riding on NYC streets.
Every year 7to 10 cyclist die in the city.That´s why we have so many´´ white Ghost Bikes´´ on the city streets..I have art work that re-cycled beautiful garbage but have nothing to do with bikes.
PS.Riding a bike comes so close to freedom with all that air on your face.
I figured that riding since 1974 I went around the 
a couple of times.
Pure Joy

Hamlet Zurita had his first art show at El Taller Latino Americano when it was located on Second Street. It was there that he met Grady and they became both friends and fellow artists, working and socializing at the Mars Bar and other places in the East Village.

And he still works part time as a bicycle messenger

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