bikes at northmodern


Most of the posts here about the design fairs at northmodern have focused on furniture, and on design and craftsmanship but each fair has an extensive range of exhibitors showing products that are more broad in their context … what is sometimes described as lifestyle design.

Of course for Copenhagen you can’t get anything more ‘lifestyle’ than bikes. Danes may have a reputation for the design and quality of their lighting and their furniture but when it comes to spending their hard-earned money and treating themselves to something special, design wise, it’s just as likely to be a bike as a lamp or a chair that they buy … it’s difficult to appreciate just how many bikes there are in the city. Not just bikes but extremely expensive bikes. And an amazing number of bike shops.

At northmodern this August there were a fair few designers and manufacturers showing their latest bikes. Several showed bikes with amazingly small but incredibly powerful motors that are supposed to take away some of the effort but having had to leap for the side as people zoomed past trying out the bikes in the aisles of the exhibition, with rather broad grins on their faces, the boost was slightly more than a gentle push.

Two companies stood out. The first was, but don’t repeat this, not Danish but, scandal of scandals, French but the colours of the bikes from Martone Cycling Co are amazing.

The other company is actually from Copenhagen. Butchers & Bicycles make what appears to be THE luxury cargo bike but the real selling point is that their bikes are built to tilt™. Watching their videos, articulation of the frame allows the rider to lean inwards as they ‘bank’ around a sweeping corner … rather like motorcross and not that much slower.

Is it possible that Queen Boudica … Boudica of the chariots with knives attached to the hubs cutting a swathe through the enemy … spent her Hen Night in Copenhagen and took inspiration from the cargo bikes she saw in Christiania but just took the idea a tad too far?