Art Racks

From today’s New York Times: David Byrne, Cultural Omnivore, Raises Cycling Gear to an Art Form With Bike Racks:

David Byrne is an installation artist, author, blogger, recording
executive, photographer, film director and PowerPoint enthusiast. He’s
even been known to dabble in music. But in certain New York
neighborhoods he may be most visible as a bicycle rider, a lanky figure
pedaling around the Lower East Side, or from Bay Ridge out to Coney
Island in Brooklyn or up to the Bronx Museum of the Arts.

In recent years his interest
in bicycles has expanded from riding them to thinking seriously about
the role they play in urban life, as he has started making connections
with politicians and international design consultants keen to keep cars
from taking over the city. So when the Department of Transportation
asked him to help judge a design competition for the city’s new bike
racks, he eagerly agreed — so eagerly, in fact, that he sent in his own
designs as well.

They were simple shapes to define different
neighborhoods around the city: a dollar sign for Wall Street; an
electric guitar for Williamsburg, Brooklyn; a car — “The Jersey” — for
the area near the Lincoln Tunnel. “I said, ‘Well, this disqualifies me
as a judge,’ ” he recalled, “but I just doodled them out and sent them
in.” He figured maybe they’d be used to decorate the contest Web site,

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