Italian artists, Suzuki scooter, Tokyo Olympics.
Suzuki unveiled the 2021 Burgman 400 in March, 2021. The refreshed platform earned the obligatory Euro 5-compliant engine revisions, a new traction control system, and a revamped ABS module. With new Burgman 400s hitting showroom floors, Suzuki Italia hopes to leverage the coverage surrounding the 2020 Tokyo Olympics with its ARThletes collection.
The “ARThletes: Burgman 400 and the modern Pentathlon” will commission four Italian illustrators to fashion Olympic promo posters with Burgman elements integrated into the design. Once the four artists complete their individual works of art, gallery owner Lorenza Salamon and ARThletes coordinator Ale Giorgini will curate an exhibit feature the pieces.
Artist Riccardo Guasco was the first to unveil his design. Focusing on equestrian show jumping, Guasco’s illustration fuses the iconic images of Mt. Fuji, Hokusai’s Great Wave off Kanagawa, and a Japanese pagoda with a jumping horse and rider. Of course, a graphic representation of the Suzuki scooter underlies the overall design.
Taking the laser run even within the pentathlon, artist Francesco Poroli captures the event's dynamic nature with a colorful palette and geometric shapes. He also draws inspiration from the Tokyo skyline, Mt. Fuji, and the Burgman’s signature dual headlight setup.
The most recent entry in the series comes from Gianluca Folì. Leaning more on Impressionism and mosaics, Foli creates a stunning piece depicting two freestyle swimming competitors. Foli also incorporates Japanese cherry blossoms and a Burgman 400 silhouette into the background and swim apparel.
"I wanted to tell how the elegance of the curves and shapes of the athletic Olympic bodies were part of the same harmony found in the design of the scooter,” noted Folì.
The Van Orton brothers will produce the fourth and final work in the series. They will focus on fencing, the last remaining pentathlon event. With the Tokyo Olympics scheduled for July 23 through August 8, 2021, Suzuki’s ARTletes program is wrapping up just in time for the festivities in Japan. Yes, creating an art series around seemingly disparate subjects seems like a stretch, but that’s always good before a big competition like the Olympics.