BY SAM HOPKINS & JOHN KAMICHA
Perhaps one of the unforeseen consequences of Nairobi’s recent urban transformations has been the emergence of a bicycle subculture. To choose be a biker, as with any subculture, means to adopt an identity, a sense of belonging that runs counter to traditional, inherited identities such as gender or ethnicity. Nevertheless, whilst biking, and other subcultures, seem autonomous from traditional institutions of power, as a means of self-expression they are closely wedded to global capitalism, for which subcultures are simply another form of profit.
Over the last two years Sam Hopkins and John Kamicha worked with strategies of collective filmmaking and collaborative re-enactment to explore what biking means for a group of bikers from Githurai. Here, cycling is less about keeping healthy or about getting from A to B and more about excess, a tendency distilled in the practice of hanging: cycling in the slipstream of trucks on the highway. The Bike Gang is a video installation that situates these moments of extreme athletic prowess within the deeper existential project of this subculture.
For the opening of the exhibition we will embark on a short group ride within Nairobi, so come with your bike.
Admission is free. #BikeGang