“Remember what it felt like after you got your driver’s license and you were allowed to drive alone somewhere of the first time?” asks South African artist Claudia Liebenberg. “Well, on a motorcycle it feels like that every time.” That adventurous spirit is the inspiration and ahem driving force behind every hand-painted print from Claude Illustration.
Whether you’re looking to hang the Lady In Red or the Here & Now on your wall, these pieces are about much more than decoration — they’re an inspiration to hit the road. Thanks to her father’s love for motorcycles (not to mention a wild talent with watercolors), the South African artist turned her lifelong passion for cafe racers into an art form. Claude Illustration began when Liebenberg painted her first bike, an Army green Royal Enfield — the first of many that would soon turn into a full-time career. Each incredibly-detailed piece takes Liebenberg several days to draw, paint, and number by hand, before it is sent to be printed on archival-quality Somerset Velvet paper in nearby Cape Town. “It’s a bit funny,” says Liebenberg, “that I love these bikes so much. I’m not a tomboy, but the oil in my blood is a genuine love for the leather seats, lines, smell, and sound of a machine.” We’ll drink to that.
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