Zack Davis, "Jump," 2021. Digital Video. Dimensions variable. Courtesy of the artist
By the middle of 2018, transportation startups had flooded Seattle with rentable bikes. Red JUMP bikes, green Lime bikes, and yellow Ofo bikes could be seen on every block, in every roadside thicket, in every body of water. The incongruously placed bike became a meme, standing awkwardly on its kickstand someplace that it could not have been ridden, from which it could barely be retrieved.
Behind their public custodianship, the ownership of these bikes was fluid. In 2018,
JUMP was already owned by Uber. When Uber sold the bike-sharing portion of their
business to Lime during the coronavirus pandemic, they scrapped a large portion of
the fleet. Bike transportation advocates, who had long admired the durable design of
JUMP bikes, considered this a particularly awful waste, and they successfully
pressured Uber to transfer the remainder of the fleet to Lime.
JUMP bicycle #40271 was first seen in Lake Union in February of 2020, before JUMP’s
sale to Lime. Submerged without power for over a year, its location-broadcast system
remains keyed to Uber’s bike network, which no longer operates. After rediscovering
the bike in the summer of 2021, the artist removed it from the lake and placed it in a
visible and accessible location. It is unknown whether it can be perceived or
processed by the Lime network.
Zack Davis was born in Brooklyn and lives in Portland, Oregon. He holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University and an M.F.A. from the University of Washington. He has worked in retail, social services, software development, and the culture industry.