{ Bali Travel Diary } Deus Ex Machina

Deus1While our entire sojourn in Bali was all about absorbing inspiration, one stop especially stands out in my memory and imagination: Deus Ex Machina. It’s a tricky place to describe, as it’s more than a store, more than a restaurant ~ more an experience, a total subcultural immersion.Deus2|ABOVE LEFT| biking toward the beach in a Maiyet top |ABOVE RIGHT| their Sunday night live music dance parties quickly become sweat-soaked explosions of funDeus3The Deus team has created what they call the Temple of Enthusiasm. It’s a square-shaped tangle of buildings just off the coastline in Canggu. You enter into a massive retail space, artfully strewn with surfboards, motorbikes, stacks of steel-toe boots and racks of too-cool t-shirts. To the left, an outdoor dining area serves crispy chicken wraps, salads with popcorn topping, and a never-ending drizzle of Bintang beer chilling on ice. Deus4 Deus5Just behind the retail store is a charming art gallery, filled with the works of Deus-compatriots from all over the world (I came home with a great Stevie Gee print). Past that, you enter into a calming courtyard, which on Sunday nights transforms into an thumping, spinning, riotous, earth-rocking dance floor.Deus6 Deus7The back row of buildings house the Deus workshops: the real heart and soul of the brand. Here is where they restore vintage motorcycles by loving hand, turning them into shimmering, speeding sculptures. Here too is where they make the custom surf boards that the local beach boys covet and collect. It all adds up to an infectious environment, teaming with creativity and the feeling of freedom and a spirit of good old fashioned fun.
Deus8In their own well-said words, “Deus makes motorcycles. Stripped down and rebuilt. Customized for your life and revved up for everything else. Deus makes four gears and loose throttles. Wind in your hair and thunder in your guts. Full speed towards the volcano. And that’s just the beginning. Deus makes surfboards. Deus makes coffee. Deus makes music. Deus makes things happen.”Deus9“That’s what Deus makes. For everything else, there is the Temple of Enthusiasm. For caffeine and gasoline. For burnt rubber and trimming fins. For fiberglass and blues. For tacos and tattoos. The Temple is where you end up from never going home. The Temple is the destination where the road doesn’t end.”
Deus10 Deus11“There is beer on tap. There is art on walls. There is shaping bays and surfboards stacked like sets out the back. There is photo studios and Thai food fusion. Cocktails built by hand and paint spilled on the floor. Everything is fast and smooth and toes over the noes. Music in your ears and flashbulbs in your eyes. Hand-carved skateboards and fixed gear pushies. Surfboards and sushi. Movie nights and drag races. It doesn’t stop there… Yes, we make motorcycles and surfboards. But it’s everything in between that makes us.”
Deus12 Deus13 Deus14|CLICK HERE| for Part I of my Bali travel diary |PHOTOS| by Kelly Framel