'The Art of the Motorcycle' is a unique, innovative exhibition concept developed by the Guggenheim Foundation and supported primarily by the BMW Group. The exhibition includes around 125 of the most varied types of motorcycles. The show pays tribute to the motorcycle as an important contribution to design and technology in the 20th century and traces its development from utility object to cult object.
Criteria for acceptance in the exhibition included, on the one hand, fundamental technological developments such as the boxer engine and Cardan drive used in the BMW R 32 in 1923; on the other hand, the exhibition highlights special design concepts such as those used in the German Megola Sport in 1922. Vehicles with historic significance also have their place in the exhibition, such as the Vespa, which made a major contribution toward motorizing the population after World War II. The most famous film motorcycle in the exhibition must be the fully chrome Harley chopper from the movie Easy Rider.
The new Guggenheim Museum at the Venetian Hotel and Resort in Las Vegas had its impressive opening in 2001. The motorcycle show was presented for the first time in New York in 1998, followed by its appearance in the Guggenheim branch in Bilbao. Over one million visitors streamed into these museums to pay homage to the motorcycle as a cultural icon. This exhibit attracted the most visitors of any show ever organized by the Guggenheim Foundation up to now.