The Rocket Bike
Ky Michaelson, a.k.a., “Rocketman” has been interested in rockets and speed since he was a child. Part inventor, part artist and sculptor, Ky has created one of the world’s most unusual gallery of rocket art. (Pics)
At the early age of 12, Michaelson was given a Gilbert chemistry set for Christmas. That was his start in learning to experiment with various chemicals. It wasn’t long after that he learned how to make black powder, which led him to create his very first rocket motor. Although challenged with Dyslexia, Michaelson focused his academic energies into these and many other creations including a radio which he built and brought to school in a hollowed out math book. In 1969, Michaelson built a rocket-powered snowmobile that made its way into the Guinness World Book of Records. After accomplishing his first world record he decided to go after every acceleration record in the world. In twelve years, Michaelson’s rocket –powered vehicles set 72 state, national, and international speed records.
Michaelson has turned his passion into a career. As a stunt coordinator and stunt equipment creator/innovator, Michaelson has worked on over 200 films, television programs, and commercials including numerous Burt Reynolds movies and “That’s Incredible” television episodes. There have been literally hundreds of feature articles written about Michaelson and his adventures.
Throughout the years Michaelson has always held a great interest in space exploration.
Most recently he concentrated his efforts on rocketry. On May 17, 2004, Michaelson and his Civilian Space eXploration Team (CSXT) were the first civilians to get a federal license to launch a rocket above 100 kilometers, the official boundary of space. While accomplishing this lifelong dream, Michaelson reached yet another speed record of 3,420 mph.
Through all these adventures and record breaking activity Michaelson has held a high aesthetic criterion for his rocket-powered items. Each piece has been painstakingly hand crafted, and fabricated without the use of blue prints or written plans. Even when found or pre-fabricated items are used to complete a piece, Michaelson spends much time considering the complete and overall visual affect.
The Bloomington Art Center views Michaelson’s work as functional sculpture, seeing in them their crafted beauty as well as their completely functional use. We are excited to showcase this local talent, his adventurous life, and his quest for beautifully crafted rockets.
More Rocket Art at Ky Michaelson