The Lowriders: From Detroit to LA and Back
by Erik Paul Howard

project STATEMENT

The Lowriders: From Detroit to L.A. and Back’ is a visual story about the people, processes, places, and products of lowriding coast to coast, with this excerpt centered in Detroit’s lowrider scene.

The cars that serve as traditional lowriders were originally designed and built in Detroit. They were sent around the world and eventually inspired a number of automotive customization cultures, many of which worked their way back to the Motor City itself.

In Los Angeles, late 1930’s Pachuco culture popularized the low slung stance that came to be emblematic of lowriding as a social and stylistic statement. L.A. eventually innovated hydraulic suspensions in the 1950’s, a qualifying modification of lowriders soon thereafter, with the ability to adjust the cars’ ride height while still driving, in response to law enforcement’s targeted crackdowns.

Since then lowriding has traveled across time, cultures, communities, and geographies as it has developed its own unique characteristics in various locales on its round trip voyage back into the heart of Detroiters where the culture is integrated into the lives of riders and their families.

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