Each year in Sturgis, motorcycle photographer, Michael Lichter presents an internationally anticipated exhibition showcasing the works of the most influential master builders and artists in motorcycling, “Motorcycles as Art” has become the prominent exhibition of the annual Sturgis Rally.
Yesterday evening in Daytona at the ‘Biker Fusion” fund raising event, Michael Lichter officially announced that this year exhibition is called “Slant Artist, An Eccentric View on Motorcycles and Art” and will focus on avant-garde bronze artist Jeff Decker.
In addition to Decker’s ten beautiful bronze sculptures, the 7,000 square foot gallery at the Legendary Buffalo Chip will be filled with a large and eclectic display of motorcycles and wall art culled from his personal collection, friends and other artists. Decker will also be working on a new sculpture in the gallery for several hours each day during which time visitors can chat and ask questions from the basics of “lost wax” bronze casting process to motorcycle history or how “Slant Artists” – the incredible motorcycle racers who climb steep inclines against the clock and each other – have impressed him.
This year “Motorcycles as Art exhibition” will feature bikes from Decker’s own collection, including historic pieces such as his 1914 Harley-Davidson Twin (that he rode across the United States in the Motorcycle Cannonball race) to unusual bikes like his 1930 H-D DAH Hill Climber and a 1949 H-D WR racer. He has personally customized machines that were previously considered off-limits, like his 1941 Crocker and his 1952 Vincent. Add to the mix his respect for bikes like ex-pro-boarder Jason Jessee’s 1949 Black Tibetan Panhead and many of Cole Foster’s bikes and you will see how diverse this artist really is.
Decker’s artist career can be traced back to his childhood, when his father took him along on visits to Steve McQueen, Ed Roth and Von Dutch. As a young aspiring artist, he worked with well-known sculptor Stanley Wanless. Today, Decker’s own sculptures (the only sculptures to be licensed by Harley-Davidson) are collected and exhibited around the world. His commissions have grown in scale to the point that a 16′ 5,000 pound bronze now graces the entrance to the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee. Hosted by The Legendary Buffalo chip, the exhibit will run from August
Jeff Decker said “Since the inception of Michael Lichter’s museum quality exhibits in Sturgis, I’ve been able to participate in them often and am extremely honored to be the focal point this year.” Michael Lichter added “These yearly exhibitions are not only a labor of love but a chance for me to openly express my creativity and introduce friends and colleagues to a venue and audience that have been incredibly loyal and generous I immensely enjoy these exhibitions and know that this year’s collection will be unlike any other.”
The exhibit is hosted at the Michael Lichter Pavillion on the grounds of The Legendary Buffalo Chip. This year’s sponsors include Hot Leathers, Handy Lifts, Interstate Batteries, Progressive Insurance and Spectro Oil.