As National Public Radio puts it, “Bikes have come to connote coolness, urbanity and romance.” And as a senior executive at one of those world-class advertising agencies opines, “Everyone loves a bike—sometimes it’s a metaphor, sometimes it’s an archetype.”
Steven Rea captures each of those sentiments with artistic flair with his book Hollywood Rides A Bike, a collection of photographs of old-school movie stars on bicycles. “The book came out of a photo blog that came out a year ago that I started called “Ride A Bike” and over the years I’ve been collecting movie stars on bicycles,” Rea says of the impetus of this project. “I’m an avid cyclist. I’ll be showing images of the book and also talking about the culture of cycling during the ’40s, ’50s, ’60s and ’70s. The owner of Bookhampton has been telling me that it is selling really well.”
Rea admits he is surprised the book has gained so much interest so quickly. “I was surprised that this was able to be a book. It came out about a month ago now and people are really interested in the photos. The response has been great. People who love old movies really love these images, and biking enthusiasts do, too, because they can see the old vintage bicycles. People into style and fashion have also been really enjoying the images—it’s an effortless style.” And a timeless one.
You can meet Steven Rea and get your copy of Hollywood Rides A Bike signed at two events on Saturday, May 12. Rea will be at Bookhampton in Mattituck on May 12 at 4 p.m., then head to the South Fork for a signing at Bookhampton in East Hampton that same night at 8 p.m.