Archive: Issue No. 87, November 2004

Go to the current edition for SA art News, Reviews & Listings.
EDITIONS FOR ARTTHROB EDITIONS FOR ARTTHROB    |    5 Years of Artthrob    |    About    |    Contact    |    Archive    |    Subscribe    |    SEARCH   

Aeolian Ride

Aeolian Ride

Aeolian Ride

Aeolian Ride Cape Town trial photographed by Mark Mcnamara

Aeolian Ride

Aeolian Ride

Aeolian Ride

New York and San Francisco rides

Aeolian Ride in Cape Town
by Kim Gurney

Cape Town will be transformed for one day into a playground of curious shapes on wheels as 50 cyclists kitted out in wind-inflated suits take to the streets later this month. The mass participatory art event - called 'Aeolian Ride' - has already taken place in New York and San Francisco and the Mother City is next in line.

The word 'aeolian' relates to wind, which inflates the specially designed suits as the riders gather speed. The free event aims to transform the landscape of the city in a fun way. It is the brainchild of artist Jessica Findley, who recently received her MA from New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program.

She was inspired partly by monthly 'critical mass' bicycle rides through New York. Findley said: 'They transformed a street into a playground, a community space and an adventure.' The effects of inflatables on humans were another factor: 'When your shape is changed, you are invited to expand your inner self as well.'

The project was also a way of inspiring herself and others. "The ride is meant to make the rider and those watching giggle and be giddy and excited. 'Aeolian Ride' transforms the landscape and the self by capturing the wind of movement and excitement in a suit,' Findley said.

Public response to 'Aeolian Ride' has varied. Some people clap, some are confused and others ask questions or shout out their own interpretations like: 'They're angels!' or 'It's sperm on bikes!'

The cyclists are all volunteers, drawn from various walks of life. Fifty suits of rip-stop nylon have been created for participants in three different models but real enthusiasts are encouraged to make their own.

The first event took place in New York in April this year and the second more recently in San Francisco. Rio de Janeiro is in the pipeline. Cape Town's 'Aeolian Ride' is planned for November 20. A successful test ride has already been conducted and local cyclists are urged to take part.

Details will be posted on Email for more information or to sign up.

Read more about Aeolian Ride in Exchange


video by Mark Mcnamara
music by moodphase5ive