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The Dutch Bike

The Dutch Bike follows the trail of the national two-wheeler, from the ubiquitous, Plain Jane workhorse seen on every street in the Netherlands to the hip designer machines seen in trendy magazines and top foreign newspapers. Premsela and NAi/010 Publishers launched the book at the Designhuis in Eindhoven on 26 October 2012 during Dutch Design Week. 

NLfiets_460x310.pngA hand-built custom bike by Elian Veltman (elian@eliancycles.com).

Accessible to anyone, young or old, poor or rich (the Dutch royal family is known to ride), the bicycle is as Dutch as tulips and windmills. The Dutch bike has found its way to the centres of major cities around the world. And the Dutch bike is changing. Professional cyclists demand top performance from their equipment, and designers have introduced the notion that a bike is part of its owner’s lifestyle. Looking ahead to a time when cycles will outnumber cars, they're experimenting with sustainable, ecologically responsible forms and manufacturing methods and new materials, determined to reinvent the Dutch bike.

Author Zahid Sardar writes about design for international magazines and has published several books about architecture and design. He lives in San Francisco.

Premsela Design Stories
The Dutch Bike is part of Premsela and NAi/010 PublishersPremsela Design Stories series of books telling tales from Dutch design history. Each centres on an iconic object that is characteristic of a particular period and has played an important role in design’s evolution.

Designer Jan Gunneweg’s wooden bike.