Aspen aims to feature ‘beauty of bicycles’ during August race | AspenTimes.com

Aspen aims to feature ‘beauty of bicycles’ during August race

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN – The city of Aspen has issued a call for artists in an attempt to find Roaring Fork Valley residents who are interested in making a bicycle sculpture to display on sidewalks, pedestrian malls and parks.

The idea is to incorporate public art into the festivities surrounding the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, which is set to roll into Aspen on Aug. 24.

“I am hoping that a variety of individuals will submit designs and commit to making a sculpture,” said Mitzi Rapkin, the city’s community relations director. “This art project is open to everyone. Many people may not call themselves artists, but we all have something creative to offer. Since so many residents here embrace the bicycle, I hope this idea will attract all sorts of people inspired to make a sculpture and express their unique vision.”

The sculptures will be out for display during August. The city is encouraging participants to use recycled materials, but whatever the sculptures are made of, they need to be either heavy enough to keep people from stealing them off the street or light enough so that local businesses can move them into their shops or restaurants at night.

Aside from creating art that looks like a bicycle, there are few guidelines for the structure. “It can be made out of wood, scraps of metal, pennies or wire. It can be a tricycle made of bailing wire or a unicycle made out of used nails,” Rapkin said. “As long as it can endure being outside for a month with lots of people touching it, we’d love to see people’s concepts manifest into reality.”

One of the goals is to remind people to come to town for the Aug. 24 “Queen Stage” of the pro cycling tour as well as the women’s racing events leading up to it.

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The city of Aspen encourages artists to sell their work. The city requires a 10 percent commission on the sale to help fund the nonprofit group that’s sponsoring the race events.

To submit a design idea: Send an email to mitzi.rapkin@ci.aspen.co.us that describes the piece, including size, approximate weight, materials used and concept sketches.

The deadline for submissions is July 18; installations are set for Aug. 1. A list of specifications and guidelines for artists is available on at http://www.aspenpitkin.com.

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