Eroica California has always had an eye towards the culture and art of cycling. The event welcomed artist Miguel Soro Garcia, who discussed the inspiration and methods for his paintings. Eroica also featured collector Elizabeth Norris, displaying her collection of vintage posters. Both artists held court at Studios on the Park, showcasing their work and engaging with the assembled cyclists and gallery visitors. The art gallery and educational center is located in downtown Paso Robles, the festival center for Eroica California. Next time you find yourself in the iconic California city, midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, stop in and view the ever-changing artists featured.

Art Inspired By Experience

Miguel Soro Garcia is an Spanish artist who raced professionally in the early 2000’s, retiring in 2003. He now uses that experience to create inspired pieces of mixed-media art. He uses acrylic and oil paints over a collage of old cycling magazines depicting the legends, stories and heroes of our sport and the racing lifestyle. Beyond the historic significance of the depicted subjects, the use of vintage magazines captures a moment in time unique to each canvas, helping to further Soro Garcia’s artistic intentions.

Eddy Merckx by Miguel Soro Garcia, 140 cm x 120 cm
Eddy Merckx by Miguel Soro Garcia, 140 cm x 120 cm

Vintage European Posters, A Tradition Of Artistry

Elizabeth Norris has been collecting posters since 1997, traveling across Europe to amass a collection of more than 2,500 unique posters, both vintage (over 20 years) and antique (over 100 years) old. Like many collectibles, the value comes from scarcity, and because the posters were intended to be hung in train stations, and on the sides of buildings, few were kept, and even fewer were well-preserved.

Part of the collecting process is the preservation and VEPCA, the organization that Norris founded, works to preserve the delicate papers by mounting the posters on archival canvas. This helps to stabilize the inks and provide support for the paper fibers, ensuring a permanent vibrance of color.

Norris led a talk about the heritage of the posters, while assistants helped display the large format pieces. We watched as Norris flipped through more than 300 of the European posters she brought to display and learned about the artists and printers who created the large posters, some more than 7 feet tall.

The full collection can be viewed here and all pieces are available for purchase. You can also visit the VEPCA showroom in Berkley, open on Tuesdays or find their next showing  Check current schedule on their website.