[CR]Confente again

Example: Racing:Beryl Burton

Date: Wed, 31 Dec 2008 11:39:02 -0500
From: <wheelman@nac.net>
To: <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Subject: [CR]Confente again

At the risk of being an outcast I have to chime in once again on this topic. Certainly there is truth to the use of the term Artist when someone has the natural talent to do something that others struggle to do. That is true of many things, art, music and even business.

That said, I have seen several Confente machines and for the record I am no artist. What I can tell you is that they do not present themselves to me as anything super special. They are good, some have clean lines and great workmanship. I saw one that I thought was really a dog. I know, blaspheme but I call them as I see them. The paint was good at best and the color was awful IMHO. I won't rain on anyone’s parade to out the bike but I have seen bikes by many other builders that put this one to shame.

As for the artistic part, again true that artist see things that I will never see. That does not mean that there are not other artists capable of seeing it and even performing to that standard. The canonization of Mario is unique to collectors in this genre. I could safely say that 99.5% of the people in the world would not think of his bikes as any more special then others in an unbiased side by side comparison.

I am pretty sure that he made many more bikes that were not under his name. Have each of these been identified and cataloged as worthy of the same value and praise that those with his decal on the downtube? If his talent truly speaks for itself then one should be able to identify it without paint or marks, the work should stand head and shoulders above all the rest.

No, I am afraid that we (myself inclusive) all get caught up in the celebrity of the person over the substance. I consider Paul McCartney a great musical talent/artist. Still I can find that level of talent in the local club scene but these folks do not have the celebrity and may never get it. That does not mean they are any less talented, it is just the way things are.

Oh, and for those who believe this to be a unique to the West Coast, I have seen people pay big bucks countrywide for his bikes. I see no particular regionalization of his brand in the US. Anyone who owns a Confente that is not on the West Coast, raise your hand.

Ray Homiski
Elizabeth, NJ