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A.R.T. Bike Gallery

Posted by Robyn Urback / Posted on August 21, 2012

art bike gallery torontoA.R.T. Bike Gallery would probably be seen as just a retail shop to some, but it's certainly a gallery in its own right to those who lust over vintage bike frames.

art bike gallery torontoOccupying a former gallery space (go figure) on Ossington between Dundas and Queen, this shop proudly boasts its collection of Gianni Motta, Cambio Rino, Moser, Masi, and more (as you can tell, there's a heavy emphasis on classic Italian steel).

art bike gallery torontoI meet one of the shop's owners, Aaron Torres, on a cool weekday evening as pedestrians breeze in and out of the shop. Since the guys behind A.R.T. Bike Gallery have full-time jobs (Aaron works as a researcher at Sick Kids), the shop is only open from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. during the week (with Saturday hours from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.). Nevertheless, the gallery/store just recently pulled off its soft opening about two weeks ago, backed by a collection of hundreds of vintage frames.

"We heard High Park Cycle was closing," Aaron says of the former shop on Dundas West. "So we went to check it out; they had an auction and we ended up purchasing a huge lot."

art bike gallery torontoThat lot supplies most of the inventory for A.R.T. Though it's mainly frames on display in shop, the guys have a full collection of seats, handlebars, drivetrain components, tires and more on reserve. Customers can opt for merely a new (old) frame (priced anywhere from $150 to $700) or get a complete build starting at $500.

art bike gallery torontoAaron takes me around the floor, pointing out some of his favourites; a couple of vintage Colnagos and an '80s-era Marinoni bike ($750), and best of all, a 1960's Campagnolo displayed in the window. With "Legnano" hand painted on the down tube, the bike boasts raised chrome lugs and a distinct head badge across the front. "This one is just for art," Aaron says. "We won't be selling it."

art bike gallery torontoThe frames (and bikes) that do sell will be quickly replaced on the floor, and Aaron says he plans to rotate the stock about once a week. In terms of tune-ups and repairs, A.R.T. plans to stick mostly with its own custom builds for now, but will tackle any incoming inquiries on a case-by-case basis.

art bike gallery torontoThe plan, eventually, is to be open during the day throughout the week, allowing Bianchi-fans and Cyclops Toronto-loyalists even more time to browse their vintage collection.

Photos by Denise McMullin

Discussion

21 Comments

jameson / August 21, 2012 at 10:56 am
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There's an incredibly interesting guy who sells used road bikes on Spadina (and also on craigslist), who I'm guessing has been doing this same work for years. It's fascinating to see someone new taking it up. Say what you would about trends, but tons of quality bikes sit idle that have years of riding and tons of joy to be had.
Laurouu / August 21, 2012 at 11:46 am
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nah nah yo. FIXIE.
Francesco / August 21, 2012 at 12:39 pm
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Aaron Im comin by this week to take a look!!
hot tamale / August 21, 2012 at 01:08 pm
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Do these guys have a website?
hot tamale / August 21, 2012 at 01:09 pm
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Or a phone number, or email address? :)
Jaded / August 21, 2012 at 01:21 pm
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I wonder how many of these frames were stolen?

-Recent Victim :(

Side note: I'm sure they were all obtained legally. I'm just a sad panda. I'll check out the shop.
sizzler / August 21, 2012 at 03:38 pm
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That argon was built by Cyclemotive on Bathurst not these guys - kind of misleading.
Lucy / August 21, 2012 at 04:01 pm
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The argon bike belongs to one of the owners. Therefore not part of the Gallery inventory. Yes, it was built by cyclemotive on bathurst.
lost / August 21, 2012 at 04:54 pm
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Admittedly I don't cycle, but this is actually really interesting. There is an undeniable sexiness about those retro frames. Good luck guys!
Johnny / August 22, 2012 at 10:31 am
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This "shop" is a joke just a bunch of jersey shore types with more money than brains
lxpatterson / August 22, 2012 at 11:46 am
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That is hilarious! I was wondering what happened to high park cycle's stock, it had been locked down by the bailiff all the summer....then one day poof. The shop owner was the craziest curmudgeon, but I always knew there were some treasures in there.
Shorty / August 22, 2012 at 02:07 pm
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never seen a bike on the shore
Ps thanks for the bike boys
lowrez / August 22, 2012 at 02:33 pm
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Very cool shop. I hope they do well!
OGclothing / August 22, 2012 at 06:43 pm
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This shop at 127 Ossington Ave. is amazing! Thanks to A.R.T we now have a local vintage bike shop for the neighborhood.
Kdiddy / August 27, 2012 at 12:29 pm
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Whoa, I'll shop here for the simple fact that those two are DELICIOUS
Louro / August 28, 2012 at 09:16 am
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I just wanna say thanks to the guys from ART gallery. You guys had the frame I was looking for with all the components I needed I needed to build my dream road bike. You guys have it all.. Cheers
DM / September 16, 2012 at 06:54 pm
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I finally had a chance to visit the place and the guys are friendly enough - I wonder though about how much they knew about their own inventory. It's unfortunate that most of the vintage racing bikes here were frankensteined into single speed / fixed gear bikes... I saw alot of the value of the inventory here being lost.
Shorti79 / October 2, 2012 at 06:09 pm
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Fixie world
Joe / November 17, 2012 at 01:40 pm
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I hope these boys do well!
Confused / April 3, 2013 at 02:30 pm
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Forget about all those boxes of parts in the back - they are NOT for sale, just hoarding like the previous owner... when these guys default I will ask the bailiff if he wants to sell parts...
Raymond / June 11, 2013 at 02:17 am
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Hi Its Raymond from Malta
sir by ant chance have you got legnano's for sale? if yes can you contact me on my email adress please which is pantalleresco@onvol.net
Many thanks regards
Ray

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