The Ride awaits – are you ready to wander and acquire?MAI BANDEM
Saddle up with The Ride, a collection of NFTs inspired by the legendary tale of W.O.J. Nieuwenkamp, the versatile Dutch visual bard who introduced the bicycle to Bali in 1904.
The Ride by Maithila Bandem propels us to wander and get lost in the world’s wonders.
The evolution from traveling by foot to rocket engines has granted humankind a thrilling ride through the space-time continuum, enabling us to traverse vast distances from A to Z beyond our wildest dreams.
From the rustle of leaves underfoot to the thunderous roar of rocket engines, these incredible machines propel us toward a future of unimaginable possibilities enriched by new perspectives and experiences of different cultures, environments, and ways of life.
The collection is a mighty steed upon which humanity gallops towards its destiny, fuelled by the fire of joy and fantasy to explore new horizons.
Join the journey of THE RIDE here
Maithila is a radiant soul bursting with creativity and a zest for life. She’s on a journey of self-discovery, pursuing her passion for architecture at the University of Sydney.
But that’s not all that makes her unique – Maithila is also a talented painter and pianist who finds solace in the world of art. She pours her heart out with every brushstroke and melody, envisioning beauty to life. It’s no wonder that creativity is her soulmate. Maithila’s father, Marlowe Bandem, has been her guiding light, nurturing her talents and inspiring her to soar higher.
Experience the magic of The Ride for yourself and join the ranks of trailblazers and creative pioneers as you journey into uncharted artistic territory.
In a nutshell, The Ride NFT is a sweet story about discovery, creation and sustenance rooted in Marlowe’s childhood memories of seeing the relief of Nieuwenkamp in a Guide to Bali book.
As a child, Marlowe was intrigued by the depiction of a westerner riding a bike, created by the elderlies of Bali, as a way to immortalise the message of openness and creativity inherent in the DNA of the Balinese people.
This image stayed with Marlowe throughout his life, and as an explorer, he wanted to pay tribute to this symbol of cultural exchange and artistic collaboration.
The homage ride
In 2016, Marlowe embarked on a tribute ride to Nieuwenkamp with a twist. Instead of riding from north to south like Nieuwenkamp, Marlowe would travel from south to north, tracing the memories of the visual bard from the perspective of the Balinese people.
Equipped with his trusty fixed-gear bicycle, Marlowe set out on his journey with a sense of purpose and excitement. He rode through lush rice paddies and picturesque villages, stopping to chat with locals and learn more about their culture and way of life.
Marlowe encountered many challenges along the two-day ride, from steep hills to sweltering heat. But he was determined to complete his tribute ride, pay homage to Nieuwenkamp, and showcase Bali’s beauty and diversity.
As he rode, Marlowe reflected on Nieuwenkamp’s art’s impact on Bali and its people. He saw how Nieuwenkamp’s work had captured the essence of Balinese culture and brought it to the world stage, inspiring generations of artists and travellers alike.
The journey was so captivating to Marlowe that he felt compelled to share it with others. He wanted to fulfill one of his bucket list items by giving a TED talk and, more importantly, inspiring and motivating a larger audience with the story.
The Nieuwenkamp bike
One person deeply moved by Marlowe’s story was Komang Sentana Putra, better known as Kedux, the famed custom motorcycle builder and sculptor from Taensiat Denpasar.
Kedux was inspired by Marlowe’s message of resilience, determination, and the power of community, and he felt a strong urge to contribute to the cause. Kedux decided to join the tribute of wandering and sharing by custom painting Marlowe’s fixed-gear with the insignia inspired by the restored relief of Nieuwenkamp of the 1930s.
The insignia depicted Nieuwenkamp in intricate Balinese decorative ornaments. It symbolised Kedux’s respect for the might and ingenuity of the Balinese culture and his appreciation of the local traditions. The custom-painted bike represented the unbreakable bond between people and their community, and it was a testament to the strength and resilience of the Balinese people.
Message from afar
Unbeknownst to Marlowe and Kedux, their tribute and powerful message had a ripple effect extending far beyond their immediate community. Their dear friend, a journalist from the Jakarta Post, was deeply inspired by their joint tribute and felt compelled to share their story with a broader audience.
The journalist wrote a feature story about the process, highlighting the resilience and community spirit of the Balinese people. The story resonated with readers from all over Indonesia, and it also quickly gained international attention.
Many were moved by the message of the tribute and the beautiful custom-painted bike, and they praised Marlowe and Kedux for their commitment to honouring Balinese culture and tradition, including the great-great-grandson of Nieuwenkamp, who messaged Marlowe about the impact of his ancestor to Bali.
The custom-painted fixed-gear bike has been praised as an authentic piece of artwork. The intricate design and attention to detail reflect Kedux’s skill and passion for his craft.
The Nieuwenkamp portrait adds a unique cultural element to the bike, making it an accurate representation of the Balinese heritage. The bicycle has become a symbol of Kedux’s artistic abilities and commitment to preserving his home country’s history and traditions.
It serves as a reminder that art can be more than just an aesthetic object; it can also be a powerful tool for cultural preservation and celebration.
Ways to go
Marlowe and Kedux were also featured in the creative tourism documentary in Denpasar in 2022. The recent documentary showcased Bali’s unique and vibrant creative scene, featuring artists and creatives who are making a difference in their communities. Diverse contribution to the cultural preservation of Bali through art and design was highlighted in the documentary, inspiring viewers to appreciate the value of preserving cultural heritage.
Now it is your turn to be part of this ongoing story by collecting THE RIDE NFTs by Maithila Bandem and be a cultural keeper to contribute to preserving Balinese culture by supporting the artists working hard to keep it alive.
Wholehearted micro-banking supervisor, host of Deeper Shades of Wax Radio Mix 98.5FM TBRP (2009-2011), digital-arts lover & eco-defender urban yuppy on fixed gears!