The Bike Zoo’s Praying Mantis
About this Artist
Jeremy Rosen – ringleader, co-founder, and mechanical-engineering graduate of UT Austin – and The Bike Zoo create life-long memories.
The Bike Zoo began as a collaboration between bike builders and puppet makers, including Jeremy Rosen, Sachi DeCou, and Juan Martinez, for the inaugural Austin First Night Parade in 2005. At that parade, more people took their pictures than had in their whole lives prior, and they knew that they had something very special and very real, and they wanted to make a life out of it, and here they are. Since that first parade, Jeremy and the group expanded to include many Austin artists, such as Grant Schaubhut, David Russ, Janis Fowler, Baru Zula, and many others.
Jeremy has enjoyed building custom bicycles and bicycle frames since the late ’80s.
Sachi is a master papermaker and seamstress; she has a knack of engaging youth in the building process and incorporating the community into performances.
Juan is an amazing bike builder and puppet-maker.
Grant was born into the role of an artist. He has been making original, hand-painted tee shirts of a unique style since the early ’80s. He is a sculptor and has lots of experience as a general construction contractor.
David is an illustrator, graphic designer, and sculptor, and has enjoyed making custom original costumes for years.
Janis is an amazing painter and sculptor, very experienced in fabric painting.
Baru has her own clothing line; she is a master seamstress.
The group created The Giant 80-foot Rattlesnake, Praying Mantis, Bat, Owl, Eagle, Carousel, Reindeer-Drawn Sled, Many Butterflies, and The Giant Armadillo. The Butterflies were among the first of their creations.
People often ask, “How long did it take to build that?” To which they must reply that there is no easy answer.
It has been an evolution. What was first Bikes, became Bikes with Wings, which soon became Bikes with Wings and Eyes, which finally became Bikes with Wings and Bodies that include Faces with Eyes and Antenna. So there really is no easy answer to the question.
The Bike Zoo is proud to be interactive and family-friendly, appealing to folks from all walks of life. They are used to being the most popular, most talked-about and the most photographed addition wherever they go. The Bike Zoo absolutely demands press attention.
You can count on The Bike Zoo to engage visitors of all ages and captivate the imaginations of those who see or interact with their larger-than-life Zoo.