Friday, June 26, 2015
The Bicycle Project
My first bicycle photo was taken on a sunny fall day purely by accident. We were spending a girl's day together. My mother, sisters, daughters, nieces and I had traveled up Highway 31 in search of gift shops, farmers markets and antique stores. We had stopped at a quaint little shop in what may have been Lapaz or Lakeville or another of the small towns along that way. I was drawn to the back of the store where an open door led out to a garden full of outdoor statues, ironwork and yard ornaments scattered among autumn's leaves and vegetation. Leaning against the back fence was this wonderful old bike, half buried in grasses with an old metal watering can hanging from one of its handle bars, faded white seat covered in leaves and rusty carrying rack over the rear wheel. I imagined someone riding into the garden from errands, having hopped off to lean the bike against the fence for a momentary rest never to return.
Six years later and everywhere I travel, I notice bicycles. My Bicycle Project was born. I am intrigued by them and the places where I find them. I have photographed them on the sandy beach of Lake Michigan, in a bar in Seattle and on a cobblestoned street in a tiny Black Forest town in Germany. I have photographed them being used for decoration, for the necessity of travel and for the joy of the ride. A bicycle leaning against a wall signifies life, a person has been here, is nearby and will probably return. For many of us our childhood includes bicycle adventures and we pass the ability to ride down to our children. Bicycles never go out of style.