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Bicycle Art by Brian Hartley Sago “High Stakes Cycling”

Submitted by on September 5, 2011 – 2:16 pmNo Comment
High Stakes Cycling by Brian Hartley Sago

photograph of the plate used to make "High Stakes Cycling" by Brian Hartley Sago

My absolute favorite bicycle themed art is the one you see above (and below). It’s called “High Stakes Cycling” by Brian Hartley Sago.  The original (below) is an intaglio print from his “Meddling in the Middle East” series.

From his “about” page:

Brian Hartley Sago
began college as a pre-medical biology student. Eventually he switched to a series of art-related majors, finishing with a B.A. Studio Art and American Indian Studies and a M.Ed. Art Education from the University of Minnesota. He is a printmaker who exhibits locally and internationally.

The majority of his works are prints inspired by historical research, blending both antique and modern printmaking techniques. Major influences include Muslim architecture and mathematical divisions for tile patterns, biology, biomimetics, Mediterranean and American history, and written languages. Math, science and history are woven into most of his works.

I exchanged a few emails with Brian last year and he explained that the bike in the print is a 1910 Racycle, that resides in St. Louis.   The dust clouds are actually photos of smoke from the Minneapolis incinerator.

Here is the full piece (click for a larger version):

I have an interest in cycling (that you knew) and I’m keenly interested in  Middle East history, so this print blends two of my favorite subjects.  Art can be interpreter from a thousand different perspectives, but what stands out to me is the tension between the old and new worlds and how the Middle East struggles to catch up to , or keep up with, modernization. Here is another from that same serious, “Camels versus Zeppelins”:

"Camels versus Zeppelins" by Brian Hartley Sago

I discovered Brian’s work while reading Justin Husman’s review of the Bike Snob’s book.  I read up on the illustrator, Chris Koelle, who listed “High Stakes Cycling” as a print he’d like to own.  I want to own it too.

Anyhow, I’ll be posting some more about bicycle related art later this week.

– Chris

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Chris started riding a bike again when he noticed the Preston Ridge Trail being constructed across the street from his house. Since then he co-founded Biking in Dallas, has gone through countless Craigslist bike projects (some better than others) and can be found pedaling around town on a Electra Ticino with a camera in tow.

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