Background Information

Cycling has been an inseparable part of Brooklyn's identity ever since the late 19th Century, when the "Bicycle Craze" of the "Effervescent Eighties" and "Gay Nineties" was in full swing. Over the years, the role of the bicycle has adapted many times to its surroundings - from popular bourgeoise leisure activity in the late 19th Century, to a cheap alternative to the automobile in the early 20th Century, to an stylish nostalgic trend in the 1940s and 50s, to an economical transportation alternative when gas prices were high in the late 70s and early 80s, to the environmentally-friendly and politically correct form of transportation that we know it as today. This piece aims to explore and convey this rich history.

How The Piece Works

Three of the Brooklyn Historical Society's east-facing windows on Clinton Street each act as a window into the history of a time period. The left-most window concerns itself with the beginnings of the historical narrative - the "Bicycle Craze" of the 1880s and 1890s. The middle window presents the period between 1920 and 1990, while the right-most window tries to capture what it is/means to be a cyclist living in Brooklyn today. This is where it gets interactive.

This Piece And You

To flesh out this narrative, you are invited to contribute whatever you may have in the way of Brooklyn-based bicycle related images, video, or text (newspaper articles, magazine articles, etc.). If accepted, submittals will be incorporated into the piece, which is to say that materials will be displayed in the Brooklyn Historical Society's 15 foot high windows.

About the Artist

This piece is created by Eric Corriel, a Brooklyn-based artist who often takes the urban landscape as his medium. Eric earned his Bachelor of Arts from Cornell University, where he majored in Philosophy. He later received the equivalent of an MFA from the École Régionale Supérieure d'Expression Plastique, in Lille, France. For more information, visit ericcorriel.com.