Thursday, January 14, 2010


I've been awe-struck by Bill Phelps' photography for years - he evokes something mysterious from motorcycles, and his technique is flawless. He seems to be always telling a story, but there are never enough clues to explain the tale, so the images exist as a fleeting moment in a larger, unknown narrative. He has said of his work, 'If I am truly taken with an idea I'll do whatever it takes to make it come to life.'

Some of the more unusual ideas must have taken some doing! Not all of his work is based around motorcycles; he does incredible portraiture as well, and other genres.

Mark Mederski, curator of the National Motorcycle Museum in Amarosa, Iowa, forwarded the link to Phelps' gallery in New York, in case you'd like an original. I would! Check out his work at the Robin Rice Gallery.


Anonymous said...


I have been a firm supporter of your blog for years now but have a
mild request... The posts I love most are the ones on specific old
rare bikes and their at-the-time breakthrough technologies, especially
the old boardtrack ones. Any chance of some more?

Thanks a lot!


vintagent said...

Hi Milo,
See the next post on the Hildebrand and Wolfmuller! And yes, more Boardtrack please!
best, Paul

Sara said...

oh man, how cool is that first photo!

"hi's sara (& toby!)"

knossos said...

can you get any larger format jpegs? love the one of the girl and the Velo KSS

vintagent said...

@sara; you will shortly be linked to a blog post
@knossos; no! I keep the quality low on pix which aren't mine, especially someone else's artwork. I don't want to be accused of theft; I'm just a reviewer and supporter of their work.

Anonymous said...

Bill Phelps pictures are amazing. He's a genius at what he does. Thanks for sharing .

Joni aka Jett said...

Wow, amazing work! The relationships between owners and their bikes is quite powerful!

John E. Adams said...

Off the scale!! I had never seen his work before - thanks much -;0)



stuman714 in Indy said...

Great stuff you have here! Congrats on your time and efforts!!
By the way, it's Anamosa, Iowa. I grew up 10 miles from there and my Dad owned a clothing store there in the 40s-60s.
Thanks again for all your work!

Don O'Reilly said...

Hauntingly sensuous....
I followed the link to Phelps' folios, and many things come to mind, all of them deeply provocative. A much needed break from the omnipresent din of production. Thanks Paul!