Ben's De Anima

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When my friend Ben asked me to build him a custom bike that would be amazing to ride, unique, and express his Haida culture I knew exactly what it would be: the De Anima AMG 01 Disc. But before we go through the build details let me tell you about my friend Ben, because he’s not just an amazing artist and passionate cyclist, he is one of the coolest and most interesting people you will ever meet, seriously.

Ben Davidson, whose Haida name is tlajang nang kingaas ("the one who is known far away"), is the son of internationally renowned Haida artist Robert Davidson. He began carving at the early age of sixteen, and completed a four-year apprenticeship program with Robert. Ben specializes in three-dimensional wood sculpture, however, he also has amazing skills when it comes to hand made jewellery and engraving. Ben is passionate about the revival of Haida art and culture; he mentors younger students, and is involved with the traditional Haida dance group the Rainbow Creek dancers. His experience as an original member of this group has allowed him to explore the relationship between Haida art and culture. Ben currently resides in Skidegate, Haida Gwaii where he owns a gallery, All About U Arts. Check out some of his amazing work on his site https://allaboutuarts.ca/gallery/gallery/. If you ever get a chance to read the book “The Golden Spruce” it will inspire you to learn more about Ben’s Haida ancestors and culture. I highly recommend it. Plus, if you are lucky enough to make your way to this tiny island and visit Ben’s Gallery, bring your wallet.

So what did I build for Ben? A stunning De Anima AMG Disc with custom geometry and paint. When I designed the paint it had to showcase Ben and Haida culture so I used one of his prints, “Buttercycle,” on the head tube, and his gallery logo on the down tube. I utilized the colours from the same print into the MR paint design that Antonio and Gianni so delicately create like a water colour painting. I could not have been more happy with the end result, and Ben loved it as well. I had them finish it off with a motivational quote from Felice Gimondi: “Poche chiacchiere e menare!” Rough translation: “Less talk and beat them!” Perfect for when Ben is suffering on those climbs in Maui. Mission accomplished. Now onto the next one.

Build Details: De Anima AMG-01 Frameset, Super Record 12 DB, Deda Stem/ Carbon Post custom painted to match, Fizik R1 Bar, Guee SL Bar Tape, Fizik Arione R3 Open Saddle, and Mavic Cosmic Pro SL Disc UST Wheels.