By Cindy Quick Wilson
I F F E R E N T
||If you have any preconceived notions about what
inspires and motivates a talented and hugely successful
custom motorcycle builder, you would probably be wrong
when it comes to Cyril Huze. You might assume artistic
vision to be a necessary element, but as for being
philosophical—not so much. Yet, Huze is obviously a
deeply thoughtful and philosophical man who feels an
intimate connection with each bike he builds. For him,
it’s a very personal journey.
As with most true artists,
Huze sees things
than the rest of us. From a very early
age, he saw beauty in the most mundane objects; toys,
miniature cars, ash trays. His artistic perspective
inspired him to beautify everyday objects in his life to
make them reflect his own sense of appeal.
With an unusual sensitivity and a
unique perception of the world around him, Huze says
conceptual inspiration can come from the most ordinary
things; the pages of a fashion magazine or gazing at
beautiful architecture. His gift, as a builder of
world-class custom motorcycles, is that his ideas are
sculpted through the eyes of an artist and the hands of an
engineer. “I love all forms of arts and communication
and have an absolute passion for motorcycles. So nothing
makes me happier than to design and fabricate rolling
pieces of art for somebody who shares the same
passions,” he explains.
Not your average motorhead, Huze spent his early
years in Paris, France, pursuing an education in marketing
and advertising. His talent was soon recognized and sought
after by some of the biggest names in the international
marketplace; accounts like McDonalds, Volkswagen and
Hertz. It was clear Huze had something very special.
Though professional success seemed to come easily
to this young Parisian, there was one dream he had yet to
fulfill. Through books, magazines and the lure of
Hollywood, he was inexorably drawn to the romance and
rebellion of American culture during the 1950s and ’60s.
His passion for motorcycles and muscle cars led him to
admire the talents of Dick Dean and Big Daddy Ed Roth.
“The main influence on me is that they showed me how
freedom of expression can lead to creativity.” After his
visit to America in 1978, he set his sights on living in
the U.S., and by the late ’80s, made the move to Boca
|The very essence of a custom motorcycle is its
originality. Huze, although continually asked to
replicate some of his most popular designs, never
reproduces a theme, and adamantly stands by his
principal: “I never duplicate what I have done
before. I am a designer, so I don’t specialize
in a type of bikes.” He keeps his ideas fresh by
constantly changing concepts and styles: bobbers
to softails, baggers to choppers, never limiting
himself to any particular model. “Only my
emotions influence me. My style is the
||result of these emotions.” He loves nothing
more than to thumb his nose at conventional
methodology and venture into his own interpretation
of shape, power and paint. “It’s true that as a
material, steel, aluminum or paint seem to have
physical limitations. But perhaps nobody tried to
push these physical limitations,” explains Huze.
When it comes to inspiration, his guiding principle
is always “uninhibited experimentation."
|Huze’s intellect, design
savvy and engineering capabilities allow his exploration
of fabrication techniques and original paint concepts that
constantly raise the originality bar for other custom
builders. For Huze, there are no rules when it comes to
customizing. He does not recognize the conventions, and
thereby, the limitations of industry “standards” in
custom development. A little outside the box? Huze never
knew there was a box.
When it comes to describing his custom work, one can
use words like stunning, innovative, original and unique,
but these descriptions, while accurate, fall far short of
the gut level emotion his bikes arouse. For anyone who
loves the sleek lines of beautifully crafted motorcycles,
the splendor of perfectly selected and accented paint, and
appreciates the total commitment to original fabrication,
there is no way to deliver the grace and beauty of these
custom machines through the written word.
|Huze has an impressive list of original and
highly acclaimed creations, but to name a few, his
firefighter-inspired bike, the Bravest, was built to
benefit the International Association of Firefighters Burn
Foundation and features actual firefighting apparatus from
the mid-1940s. Its “fire engine red” paint and 1940s
vintage charm was featured (centerfold—ooohhh la la!) in
the January/February 2007 issue of Barnett
Magazine and was also featured in a world-wide tour.
His war-era inspired bobber, Bombshell, is a tribute to
the flyboys’ penchant for decorating their instruments
of war with voluptuous pin-up girls as a way of inspiring
the troops and distracting the enemy. Bombshell has been
featured in magazines nationally and internationally. More
of his work can be seen on his Web site (below), as well
as a selection of custom parts and accessories.
His innate sense for creating beautiful motorcycles has
brought him to the pinnacle of fame and recognition in the
fiercely competitive world of custom bike building. In
October of 2006, Daytona Biketoberfest saw the induction
of Huze into the Hall of Fame by the International Master
Bike Builders Association, an honor he shares with fellow
builders, Arlen Ness, Dave Perewitz, Eddie Trotta, Aaron
Green, Matt Hotch and the late Indian Larry.
Huze attributes his success to his passion for
motorcycles, the artistic connection that allows him a
special intimacy with design, shapes and colors, and his
ability to bring his passion to life.
He knows no boundaries or limits when
it comes to seeing his esthetic dreams come to fruition.
Hailed as one of the true masters of custom motorcycle
design and fabrication, Huze is, by anyone’s standards,
at the top of his game.
For more information, visit www.cyrilhuze.com.
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