Following in the footsteps of our radically cool French compatriots (Blitz motorcycles) leads us on to the unwaveringly wild El Solitario, a custom garage in the heart of Galicia, northern Spain. Here, co-founders David Borras and Valeria Libano create outrageous custom motorcycles with a combined will of free masculine spirit and Spanish passion that is second to none. There is an air of nostalgia that surrounds them, a mixture of 60’s psychedelic spirit and erratic timeless virility.
Unsurprisingly, El Solitario founded themselves on the sense of awareness, fragility and the raw adrenaline of what riding a motorcycle is. It is the allure of transporting yourself through the landscape on a machine that resembles a rocket ship, with the knowledge that one mistake could be the end; that tremendous feeling that Hunter S. Thompson so eminently described as the Edge.
But custom bikes are not the only thing that fuels the Spaniards, their determination to produce the highest quality, most durable gear that not only exudes authenticity, but represents the classic attire of the icons of old, is fundamental to the notion of their brand. It is the eternal search for the pinnacle of custom-culture x fashion, and a propagation of all the creative industries.
The numerous one-off custom project have seen El Solitario rise to prolific heights in the scene, showing bikes at competitions across the globe, and becoming pivotal to the feature length movie The Greasy Hand Preachers, of which Orlando Bloom was among the attendees at the premier last year. Few small-brands have achieved the same cross-continental reach of El Solitario with quite as much freedom.
With partnerships that have seen them collaborate with some of the coolest companies, including the quintessential British motorcycle clothing brand Davida, and features in numerous global publications, it appears the Spaniards, like the Blitz boys, have become defining figures in the custom scene and are on the precipice of becoming iconic themselves.