Some words from Brian Vernor, the artist behind the art:
For the past few years I’ve been inspired by, and guided by the idea of a handshake. The simple gesture of two humans joining hands together can be the beginning of so much. The handshake is at its root a gesture of possibility. With this gesture in mind I knew two kindred spirits in my life must meet in a meaningful way simply because I knew much could and undoubtedly would come out of it. Richard Sachs and Anthony Mangieri are both practitioners of unique trades which require dedication and humility, and from my perspective they would be fast friends upon meeting. Of course, each was already aware of the other and it was only a small role I played in getting them together one drizzly Fall morning in Manhattan’s East Village. Both men knew this neighborhood well from their respective years diving into the city from their New Jersey homes. On that day we filmed a short documentary, an open-ended film about the idea of the handshake. Someday we’ll see what comes of that, but more pertinent to the day at hand, Richard and Anthony are now good friends with great respect for each other’s particular craft, one a pizzaiolo and the other a bicycle maker. As a simple gesture of friendship and respect the two have made available a cycling water bottle featuring my artwork of each. The process was born of my own desire to make more art with my hands. As a filmmaker and photographer much of my work lives in a digital realm, and to create with my hands is if nothing else a frustrating, uncertain process that imposes humility on me. The portraits printed on these water bottles feature my mixed media collages of watercolor, photography, wax pencil and acrylic.