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A modern spin on Canberra’s cycle culture

Laura Peppas

Canberra has long been a city of cyclists – a drive on our roads is never complete without dozens of sightings of lycra and magpie-proof helmets.

So it was only natural for the Canberra Centre to put the spotlight on our city’s passion for pedal pushing in its new installation, Cycle Culture.

For the exhibition, the Centre collaborated with a group of local artists, silversmiths and textile designers, with each designer challenged to create their own spin on three traditional bicycles.

One of the artists is local textile designer Megan Jackson, who has previously designed and produced a collection of hand printed textiles, furniture pieces and works on paper. Her work has been described as a playful approach to pattern and colour, characterised by a modern, abstract aesthetic.

Photo: Paul Chapman

Photo: Paul Chapman

Megan says she approached each bicycle as a three-dimensional canvas on which to playfully explore the interaction of materials and pattern.

“I combined hand screen printed fabric, wood and paper in a new form, which interacted to create a visually stimulating expression of texture, volume, colour and pattern,” Megan says.

“For one bike, I cut up thousands of strips of fabric and tied it to the frame to embrace that fabric. For the other two bikes I had hand printed impressions and arranged them in different patterns and colours.”

Megan says she spent roughly four hours designing the bikes.

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“Having a bike as a canvas is something I’ve always wanted to do because my work is based around different colours and patterns,” she says.

“A bike in its simplest form is really a beautiful object.”

Other local artists involved in the installation include Luke Chiswell, Charlie Kilmartin and Alison Jackson. 

Cycle Culture is now on display near R.M. Williams on Level 1, Canberra Centre.

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Laura Peppas

Laura Peppas is HerCanberra's senior journalist and communications manager and is the Editor of Unveiled, HerCanberra's wedding magazine. She is enjoying uncovering all that Canberra has to offer, meeting some intriguing locals and working with a pretty awesome bunch of women. Laura has lived in Canberra for most of her life and when she's not writing fervently she enjoys pursuing her passion for travel, reading, online shopping and chai tea. More about the Author

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