“I have lived in Copenhagen for many years now and I like to call this city ‘Bicycle Heaven’,” Barton says. “Ever since I arrived I have tried to make my illustration useful to the scene here.”
Barton has produced work for “a huge number of Alleycat races (unlicensed bike messenger races) and two bike messenger international championships”. But perhaps his longest-running client relationship is with the Omnium Cargo bike brand.
“I was responsible for every visual representation of the Omnium brand from day one – designing logos, coding and designing the website, catalogues, taking all photos, illustrating caps, jerseys, T-shirts and stickers and writing copy and more,” Barton says. “Omnium Cargo is now one of the best known bike brands in the cargo bike business. Actually I have just stopped working with them on an every day basis because it had become a full time job and I have a lot of other things going on which I need to concentrate on, but I feel like the brand is my baby a bit.”
On February 1, Omnium is opening its first store – in Copenhagen’s Nørrebro area. “It’s a huge shop with showrooms, workshops, social space and gallery, Barton says “I’ll be involved in the curation of the gallery in the future,” he says, but for the opening, the shop’s gallery will host a retrospective of Barton’s bike-related artwork.
“I’m amazingly lucky that I have been able to work so much with the bike messenger community here,” he says. “I have been trusted over and over again and have tried to dedicate vast amounts of time to projects which are rarely paid – or only very sparingly paid. In return I have done some of the work I care about the most out of anything I’ve ever done. And for some of the best people I’ve ever met.”
10 Years of Bike Art by Jody Barton is at Omnium Gallery, 200 Nørrebrogarde, Copenhagen from February 1. Details here.
See more of Barton’s work here.