The Bike Bridge

The Bike Bridge is now on view at Oakland’s new Uptown Art Park at 19th and Telegraph, across from the Fox Theater.  Thank you to all who joined us for the artwork’s lively  opening reception on April 5, 2013!

The Bike Bridge
By Bike Bridge students, artist Michael Christian, and The Crucible Oakland
Between 19th St and William St on Telegraph Ave
California March 8, 2013 – Present
Recycled and reclaimed bicycles and bicycle parts

The Bike Bridge is the subject of a new short documentary by filmmaker Pierre Forcioli-Conti. Check it out:

The Bike Bridge from Helios Flying Circus on Vimeo.

The Bike Bridge

The Bike Bridge by Bike Bridge student artists and lead artist Michael Christian

The Bike Bridge is a collaboration with the youth of Oakland, artist Michael Christian, and with partner organization The Crucible. The twelve enrolled participants, all young women, began the project with classes in welding and art-bicycle creation, generously hosted by The Crucible. The program culminated in the collaborative creation of a large-scale sculpture made of reclaimed bicycle parts, led by Christian.

The young women artists who worked on the Bike Bridge are:

Ale’ah Bashir Baagee
Pooja Disabar
Antonia Giles
Munirah Harris
Ocean Jensen
Andrea Kudsk
Crystal Lopez- Franco
Juliana Ramos
Samariya Schaffer
Jasmine Schwinges- Williams
Zoe Turin
Brea Williams

Supporting artists Benjamin Carpenter and Orion Fredericks also helped with the creation and installation of the finished piece.

crucible_logo

The crucible instructors who participated in the program are: Maurice Cavness, Esther Cervantes, Max Chen, Evelyn Donis, Beckey Kaye, Chris Niemer, and Liisa Pine Schoonmaker

 

The History of the Project

Twelve young women, representing seven different high schools in East and West Oakland, were selected to participate in the project. They completed courses in MIG welding and Art-Bicycle Making at The Crucible, yielding impressively inventive and refined art-bike creations. In these classes these young women learned the skills needed to help construct a large-scale sculpture.

Bike Bridge Class

A program participant of the Bike Bridge paints her bike in the Art-Bike course at The Crucible

In the second phase of the project, artist Christian worked with The Crucible’s instructors and the youth participants to design a “skeleton” structure that was then embellished by the youths. These embellishments and other non-structural parts of the sculpture are made of reclaimed bicycle parts, connecting with urban bike culture and the buzz around art bikes.

Michael Christian Klimax

Klimax by artist Michael Christian, at Burning Man, 2003

About the Site

The Bike Bridge sculpture will debut in a public space in Oakland in 2012. The piece will act as a gateway to a new community gathering space, establishing it as an ongoing venue for youth and bike-culture events.

The sculpture’s arched form represents a bridge between adjacent communities with a history of conflict, a gateway that invites transformation through collaboration and expression.

Bike Bridge Class

A program participant of the Bike Bridge welds her bike in the welding course, hosted by The Crucible.

See more pictures of works in progress on our Flickr page.

Press

Download the press release for the Bike Bridge.

Support

The Bike Bridge project is funded in part by a $10,000 grant from The National Endowment for the Arts. The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government that has awarded more than $4 billion on projects of artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector.  To join the discussion on how art works, visit the National Endowment for the Arts at arts.gov.

Other key supporters of the Bike Bridge include the Bill Graham Foundation, the Darby Foundation, Melissa Baron, Greg Galanos and Carole L’Abbe, and Bobby Sarnoff.  The installation was also made possible by all of the backers of the project’s successful Kickstarter Campaign

The Bike Bridge has also been supported by donations of discarded bicycles and bicycle parts from:

Gallery