Gabba Gabba Hey – New York's Bicycle Film Festival is coming to Germany

Gabba Gabba Hey – New Yorks Bicycle Film Festival kommt nach Deutschland

When Brendt Barbur started the Bicycle Film Festival in New York in 2001, you had to be a great visionary to imagine that New York could be a good place for cyclists. In 2010, Eben Weiss, better known as Bike Snob NYC, describes the early history of New York's bicycle traffic in his first book and, in addition to the impressive beginnings in the 18th century, also reports on an exciting racing bike scene in the 70s and 80s of the last century. But around the 2000s, apart from the legendary New York bike couriers, there were only a few daredevils who plunged into everyday traffic in the metropolis on the Hudson River. Exactly these daring ones, the couriers and believers were the beginning of a scene that brought together cycling, subcultures and being cool and thus became a role model and inspiration. Not controlled, put on, wanted and by disguise, but through authentic behavior and "street credibility". When a Janette Sadik-Khan finally implemented the associated transport policy and banned cars from the streets or at least created space for cyclists, the underground culture became a movement that is now slowly but surely becoming a mass movement. Today it is clear that New York is getting on its bike.

Now the question arises what that has to do with us. With German cities like Cologne, Hamburg, Berlin, Munich or Düsseldorf. After all, we're definitely not New York. Maybe we're not really a big city in Düsseldorf. We can't ride bikes either, we've proven that for decades. But that's exactly where New York should be a role model. If such a juggernaut of a city is able to promote cycling and see it as a future, then a compact city like Düsseldorf, idyllically situated on the Rhine, should be able to take huge steps in terms of cycling within a short period of time. Above all, because the framework conditions allow fewer and fewer alternatives. In addition, a steadily growing proportion of the population is fed up with a car industry that has been juggling with improved emissions values ​​and finite resources for decades. Threatening gestures announcing massive job cuts as a result of regulation of the auto industry are starting to seem toothless in the face of social change. It's time for new ways.

Art, culture and fashion are able to create new paths in creative ways and thus accelerate change. A Bicycle Film Festival entertains its viewers, but it can also inspire curious people who were previously critical of the two-wheeler. Names like Ai Weiwei, Roisin Murphy, Michael Gondry, Karl Lagerfeld, Spike Jonze, Ian MacKay, Johnny Knoxville, Peaches or Matthew Modine would not or only superficially be associated with bicycles in Germany, but the BFF welcomed them all and allowed to inspire. The list of venues that the festival has visited in the last 16 years is a list of real metropolises, Düsseldorf is rather a small fish. But we hope that Düsseldorf can cope with the debut of the Bicycle Film Festival in Germany. We hope that viewers will flock to the cinemas and enjoy Brendt Barbur's excellent selection. Let us all be seduced a little by films dealing with bicycle instructors, with poetic women cross-country skiers, with night rides through the Ewok jungle and cycle races in Africa, with cycle couriers in Lebanon, Tokyo and New York, with a visit to the Chernobyl zone and much more. Let's be informed and entertained.

All those who are skeptical about cycling, who consider the car to be an indispensable means of transport and dismiss the cycling trend as cheap, short-term hype: come to the cinemas. Take a look at the fascination that can emanate from bicycles. You will be amazed.

Thursday February 9, 2017 to Sunday February 12, 2017. The Bicycle Film Festival in Düsseldorf. In the cinema, metropol, postPOST and chic cap. 32 films, 1 concert, 1 exit. Festival ticket € 45,-

More info here.

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