Picture Intermission – Custom Revolution at the Petersen Museum

In Intermissions by AbhiLeave a Comment

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It’s here! The world’s first museum exhibit featuring “the new generation of customized motorcycles”, Custom Revolution is now open to the public at the Petersen Museum. Speaking of firsts, this is the first time the Petersen has brought on a guest curator – and it’s none other than Paul d’Orléans!

The opening event was Friday night, so I went to see what Paul had put together. His sense of style is not just limited to motorcycles!

Photo by Susan McLaughlin


Photos by Nathan May


There are over 20 bikes in the exhibit (which replaces the former Harley vs. Indian display), and there’s a heavy percentage of electric motorcycles. Here are just a few of my favorites to give you a preview of what to expect:

Rondine by Medaza Cycles out of Cork, Ireland. Medaza says they build “cycles for discerning gentlemen and teenage punks”, and Rondine is one of their best. It earned Medaza an AMD World Championship of Custom Bike Building in 2013 and it was featured in a book that Paul contributed to – The Ride.

Rondine started as a 1974 Moto Guzzi Nuovo Falcone, and like just about everything else in the exhibit, there isn’t much left from the original bike!

BMW Alpha by Mark Atkinson out of North Salt Lake, Utah.

It’s a fascinating combination of a Turkish industrial designer who created a jaw-dropping design and a builder in Utah who figured it should become reality. Alpha is powered by a BMW K75 drivetrain.

If you remember, I featured Mark and his build last year at the Quail Motorcycle Gathering (where the bike won the Innovation Award) when I finally got to meet him:

Blue Monday by NYC Norton out of Jersey City, New Jersey. This was specifically built for the Custom Revolution show, and it looks just as good as NYC Norton’s other race bikes. The basic components are a Seeley frame and a ’62 Matchless G50 motor with custom bodywork and a custom exhaust.

Beezerker by Speed Shop Design out of Boston, Massachusetts. This was built by Chris Flechtner, who is a professional silversmith. The name plays off of “Beeza” as this utilizes the drivetrain from a ’65 BSA Thunderbolt. Check out the clever exhaust, which merges into the frame!

Photo courtesy of the Petersen Museum

Just about everything except the motor and the seat were hand built by Chris, including the hand-formed tank/bodywork which was made out of aluminum and apparently took hundreds of hours to sand and polish.

There’s plenty more to see, including builds from Roland Sands, Michael Woolaway of Deus Ex Machina, Falcon Motorcycles, Ronin Motorworks, Thrive Motorcycle, and even Alta! I don’t want to spoil everything, so head on over to the Petersen to check it out for yourself. I guarantee you’ll enjoy it.

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