Rosson Crow: Myth of the American
Motorcycle
Art, Innovation and Adventure
What do you know about motorcycles?
Can a motorcycle be a work of art?
Is there a motorcycle...
Early Motorcycles
Hildebrand
&Wolfmuller
The motorcycle was invented in
Germany in 1885. It was basically a
bicycle with a...
In 1903 William S. Harley and Arthur
Davidson made their first bikes in a 10’
x 15’ shed with “Harley-Davidson
Motor Compa...
Motorcycles: Some Random Facts
The first Harley Davidson motorcycle built
in 1903 used a tomato can for a
carburetor.
Moto...
One of the obvious changes to the motorcycle has been an increased
focus on the way it looks. TV shows like American Chopp...
Motorcycle Films
What motorcycle films have you seen?
What are some stereotypes associated
with the motorcycle riders in t...
Motorcycle movies, TV shows, and books
most often portray the stereotype of the
rough-and-tough bikers who are
members of ...
The motorcycles featured in the CAC exhibit are
Harley-Davidsons and Indians, the two longest
standing American brands. Th...
Rosson Crow
Rosson Crow was born in 1982 in
Dallas, Texas. She currently
lives and works in Los Angeles.
Crow primarily pa...
Rosson Crow researched motorcycle history and culture before creating the paintings
for this show. She wasn’t interested i...
Crow was inspired by motorcycle
bars, literature about motorcycle
culture and even by artwork.
Compare and contrast the
pa...
What objects are in this picture?
How do these objects relate to a motorcycle lifestyle?
What do you think this scene port...
After viewing Rosson Crow’s paintings
and learning more about motorcycles
how has your view of motorcycle
culture changed?...
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CAC in the Classroom: Rosson Crow

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A classroom slideshow for the exhibition Rosson Crow: Myth of the American Motorcycle

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CAC in the Classroom: Rosson Crow

  1. 1. Rosson Crow: Myth of the American Motorcycle
  2. 2. Art, Innovation and Adventure What do you know about motorcycles? Can a motorcycle be a work of art? Is there a motorcycle way of life? If so, can you describe it? Do you know any artists who have painted images of motorcycles?
  3. 3. Early Motorcycles Hildebrand &Wolfmuller The motorcycle was invented in Germany in 1885. It was basically a bicycle with a motor attached that only went about 25 mph.
  4. 4. In 1903 William S. Harley and Arthur Davidson made their first bikes in a 10’ x 15’ shed with “Harley-Davidson Motor Company” hand-painted on the door. From its simple beginnings in Germany the motorcycle has become the most widely used form of motorized transport in the world with about 200 million currently in use world wide. What do you think makes motorcycles so popular all over the world?
  5. 5. Motorcycles: Some Random Facts The first Harley Davidson motorcycle built in 1903 used a tomato can for a carburetor. Motorcycles have also changed the practice of war. By 1918, fifteen years after Harley-Davidson first made their bikes publicly available, they had provided most of the 20,000 motorcycles used in World War I. The "hog" association started when the Harley-Davidson racing team's mascot, a pig, was carried on a victory lap after each race won by the team. On September 24, 2009 Chris Carr set a motorcycle land speed record of 367.382 mph on a BUB - Lucky 7 streamliner.
  6. 6. One of the obvious changes to the motorcycle has been an increased focus on the way it looks. TV shows like American Choppers show the new importance of a bike exhibiting its own character through customization. How does the way a motorcycle look reflect the characteristics of the owner? What do you think the owner of this bike would be like? Could a motorcycle also reflect the kind of person its owner wants to be?
  7. 7. Motorcycle Films What motorcycle films have you seen? What are some stereotypes associated with the motorcycle riders in those films?
  8. 8. Motorcycle movies, TV shows, and books most often portray the stereotype of the rough-and-tough bikers who are members of gangs. Even when the hero of a story is a motorcycle rider he/she is labeled as an outlaw or does not want to be a part of the majority. Some parts of biker culture look at racing, one of the most popular but also overlooked uses of the machine. Are there other images of bikers you can think of? Do you think of bikers in the same way as these movies?
  9. 9. The motorcycles featured in the CAC exhibit are Harley-Davidsons and Indians, the two longest standing American brands. The bikes displayed here are all painted by Jim Farr, known to many as Dauber. Dauber is known for painting pin stripes and flames free hand.
  10. 10. Rosson Crow Rosson Crow was born in 1982 in Dallas, Texas. She currently lives and works in Los Angeles. Crow primarily paints scenes of historical places that have a sense of nostalgia for the time and place. While human figures are not painted within the scene, their presence is implied as having recently left or arriving soon. Are there paintings in this exhibit that have these qualities?
  11. 11. Rosson Crow researched motorcycle history and culture before creating the paintings for this show. She wasn’t interested in creating images of real places and motorcycles. Instead she wanted to create the feeling or idea of biker culture. How do these neon signs relate to motorcycles? Where would you see these kind of signs? When you think of motorcycles do you only think of the machine itself or of things that relate to it?
  12. 12. Crow was inspired by motorcycle bars, literature about motorcycle culture and even by artwork. Compare and contrast the painting by Crow and the one below by Ed Ruscha. Why do you think she made those changes? What is she expressing? How does Crow’s work relate to motorcycle culture?
  13. 13. What objects are in this picture? How do these objects relate to a motorcycle lifestyle? What do you think this scene portrays?
  14. 14. After viewing Rosson Crow’s paintings and learning more about motorcycles how has your view of motorcycle culture changed? Do you think of motorcycles as works of art? Why or why not? Motorcycles unite people. The bikes shown in this exhibit show the individualized, yet universal love for these machines.

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