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 www.aeolian-ride.info.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to sign up.
WATCH A SHORT TRAILER FOR THE CAPE TOWN RIDE
(1.9 M, QUICKTIME .MOV)
video by Mark Mcnamara
music by moodphase5ive