MUSKEGON, MI – An exhibit featuring motorcycles and stock car race photos will highlight the summer 2018 offerings of the Muskegon Musuem of Art.
“American Icon: The Art of the Motorcycle” and a complimentary exhibit “Whiskey Ridge: The Summer of ’51” will be displayed from Thursday, May 17, to Aug. 12.
The exhibitions include motorcycles from area collectors and photos of Whiskey Ridge stock car races taken by Dot Thompson in the summer of 1951.
The public is invited to a free opening reception from 5:30-8 p.m. on May 17 at the Muskegon Museum of Art, 296 W. Webster Ave., downtown Muskegon.
“American Icon” plays off Muskegon’s motorcycle events, Rebel Road and Muskegon Bike Time, which occur simultaneously in July.
The exhibit offers a glimpse at the artistry of the motorcycle over the years, through vintage and custom bikes borrowed from Muskegon-area collections. The display includes motorcycles from Harley-Davidson alongside early, ultra-rare examples from American manufacturers Henderson and Excelsior.
“American Icon” also features photos that highlight customized motorcycles and the men and women who ride them, by Michigan photographers Bill Chardon and Jennifer Green.
“Whiskey Ridge” features 12 photos that Dorothy “Dot” Thompson took with her Kodak Brownie box camera during 1951 at the Whiskey Ridge Raceway.
The track has alos been known as the Newaygo County Speedway and the Maple Island Raceway. It was a three-eighths mile dirt oval track located in Grant.
The photos capture a sense of the speed and danger of early stock car races. Images include the drama of the day and the faces of the drivers and spectators.