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, paintings by Triumph ‘resident artist’ Conrad Leach, 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.
The 30+ confirmed bikes for this exhibit include premium examples of 50s/60s Café Racers (Gold Star, Norvin, Triton, Dunstall, etc) from Herb Harris (Harris Vincent Gallery), Yoshi Kosaka (Garage Co), Mark Mederski (National Motorcycle Museum), Gordon McCall (Quail Motorsports Gathering), plus Willie G Davidson’s #0001 1977 XLCR, and machines from Alain Bernard, Arlen Ness, Bryan Fuller, Brian Klock, Dustin Kott, Giuseppe Carucci, Greg Hageman, Jason Michaels, Jay Hart, Jay LaRossa, Kevin Dunworth, Ray Drea (Harley-Davidson design director), Roland Sands, Skeeter Todd, Steve “Brew Dude” Garn, Steve “Carpy” Carpenter, Thor Drake, Vincent Prat (Southsiders MC) and Zach Ness. Included in the show are original or modified machines by BMW, BSA, Ducati, Honda, Harley Davidson, Moto Guzzi, Norton, Rickman, Triumph, Vincent and Yamaha.
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 ‘Motorcycles as Art’ exhibitions are hosted each year by the Legendary Buffalo Chip, this year celebrating its 32nd consecutive annual concert series, which attracts the music industry’s hottest stars to their famed camping resort every August during Sturgis Bike Week. “Ton Up! – Speed, Style and Cafe Racer Culture” sponsors include Hot Leathers and Keyboard Motorcycle Shipping.