Veloci Rapture

November 3, 2013 |

Bicycles. Art. Two great tastes that taste great together, as the Reese’s commercials used to say. With its mostly-flat streets and sunny blue skies for fans of the former, combined with the open minds and low rents favored among practitioners of the latter, Tucson has long been home to aficionados of both.

It should come as no surprise to us desert rats, then, that a studio workspace for bicycle-loving egalitarian artists has in recent years sprouted and flourished in the Old Pueblo. In a landscape dotted with Sonoran flora and bounded by national parks, inspiration is literally everywhere and two-wheeled creative types tend to gravitate towards one another.

VelociPrints, headquartered at 310 S. Meyer Ave., is a hub of sorts for these freewheeling folks. There is absolutely no admission cost to their upcoming annual show featuring all-print, limited edition two-dimensional bike-inspired art, and every single one of the works displayed, and sold for only $40 each, at Borderlands Brewing Company, 119 E. Toole Ave.!

A percentage of all sales will go to Tu Nidito Children and Family Services, the only organization in Southern Arizona offering comprehensive grief support for young people suffering the loss of a loved one, and a complete set of prints will be donated to this year’s Bicycle Inter-Community Art and Salvage (BICAS) Annual Art Auction – which takes place this December.

VelociPrints founder and director Nathan Saxton is only too happy to sing the praises of his collective’s many talented members. Among VelociPrints’ fifteen participating artists is Matt McCoy, a graphic designer for beloved film/art house The Loft Cinema and a local disc jockey as well. Printmaker Luis Valdez, according to Saxton, “has got a really good sense for the feel of Tucson.” Mural painter Ruben Urrea Moreno creates art about bikes and also builds bikes that are art pieces, and is known for his make-art-every-single-day tagline, “To paint – you must paint.”

Bicycles. Art. What’s missing?


Is there any better place for the VelociPrints gang to show their stuff than Borderlands Brewery Company, one of the latest and greatest watering holes downtown?

“This will be our third year at Borderlands,” says Saxton, describing the combination of bicycle-inspired artwork and locally-produced suds as a “natural match.” The whole idea of the “community-centric” VelociPrint Show is “to get a ton of people in the building. Everybody contributes a little and everybody gains a little. Bicycling is an activity that people of all ages and economic levels can enjoy,” Saxton says.

“We’ve designed this event in that spirit, and our goal is that everyone who attends is inspired to jump on a bike the next day.” Or even later that same evening, one presumes.

VelociPrint Show 2013 debuts at Borderlands Brewing Company, 119 E. Toole Ave., on Saturday, Nov. 16 from 4-9 p.m. and runs through Nov. 30. The savvy cyclist might want to pedal over from the Greater Arizona Bicycling Association (GABA) bicycle swap meet taking place nearby at 5th Avenue and 7th Street earlier that opening day on Saturday, Nov. 16. Just look both ways and be careful crossing those modern streetcar tracks that were recently laid down!

Bicycles. Art. Beer. Community. For more information, visit, and

Category: Arts, Community, DOWNTOWN / UNIVERSITY / 4TH AVE, Events