I’ve just finished editing the film you find below. A young filmmaker friend of mine, Violeta Brana-Lafourcade went to Copenhagen recently to interview for this blog, the famous Mikael Colville-Andersen.
Mikael is a film maker by background whose life, chance has turned in a different direction.
The uploading of a photo of his several years ago onto Flicker, a mysterious snap of a long skirted biker in high heels (she was waiting for the lights to change) catapulted him into a a new life.
The wild response prompted the creation of the blog, Copenhagen Cycle Chic, dedicated to the discovery that not only are bikes beautiful, but they present those who ride them as very beautiful as well.
Whilst the word, Chic, suggests fashion, even the fashion industry, catwalks, etc. Mikael’s observed cycle world is peopled by riders who wear their own clothes, who are not posing, who are unselfconscious in their gliding beauty.
There is no promotion of special cycling clothes here, indeed his cycle chic is all about avoiding the the usual uniforms of cycling, the tight lycra, the space age helmets.
It’s all, by contrast, about just getting on a bike, any old bike, and just riding it because that’s the the most sensible way to get from A to B. The attractiveness is the byproduct.
As my blog name suggests, I put special emphasis on the type of bike one rides, the sit-up bike and the posture it produces.
It’s no accident that almost every photo on Cycle chic has its rider proudly and serenely upright as if to say, I’m at the peak of this way of being, and I’ve nothing to do with cyclists hunched over their machines for speed.
Cycling is a broad church, everyone keeps reminding me. True enough, but here in Australia, the congregation has warped itself a certain way, and I find nothing wrong with suggesting some balance.
It so happens that this coincides with the bursting on the scene of a video from Britain which explores beauty on bikes. It’s release is imminent
We have only seen the trailer of Beauty and the Bike, as yet but everyone is rightly tantalized. Here it is.
I plan to explore this same theme here; why are young women not riding bikes?
On a smaller scale, but following the same idea, I hope to recruit a group of young women, probably around 15-16, who’ve never been interested in using bikes for transport, and find out why.
Then, having nailed down the reasons for their disinterest, we’ll get them on some stately sit-up bikes, dressed as they want to be seen, and we’ll have them riding around, savoring this new experience, and seeing if their attitudes change.
We will have a problem, Jill Charlton and I, which the British film makers did not have.
There, the girls could legally ride without helmets. Since helmets, we predict will turn out to be part of the problem, my daughter recently got on a bike after many years when I stopped the helmet nagging…..
….we’ll have to find a way to have our girls ride hair free as well.
Anticipating that problem, we’ll find an off road location which looks like normal streets, but to which the helmet law does not apply, probably the grounds of a University. There, we’ll do our test rides.
Anyone who’d like to help with this project, please contact this blog.
And if you think we’re thus promoting dangerous behavior, consider that the safest cycling takes place in those countries with the least helmet use, a paradox which it takes some time to delve, but which deserves debate it has yet to get.
See another film on this blog; Doctor on a Bike
See also the films on the charming Sue Abbott, who has chosen to confront the law.