Rider statement from ADRIANA PERALTA: "Our experience riding our bikes in Toronto has been the most amazing thing -- something that we couldn't do in Mexico. As doctors, we know that exercise is really good in a lot of aspects. We also don't like to take the public transit transportation because we know that is slow, dirty, very expensive -- and it's frustrating. The photo session was actually our first experience in a real photo studio, we enjoy trying new things and having new experiences."
In 1890s Europe and North America, the bicycle was gaining popularity as a means of transportation, recreational activity and sport. However, medical opinion about the health benefits of cycling, especially for women, was mixed. One of the supposed risks for women was a condition known as “bicycle face.”
At the turn of the century the bicycle afforded many women increased freedom and autonomy, and the bicycle itself became a symbol of women’s emancipation. With the ridiculous prognosis of "bicycle face" we saw how cycling, feminism, patriarchy and medical opinion collided in the1890s.
Photographer Marc Bernhard says, "The purpose of BikeFACE! is to promote and celebrate women’s commuter, recreational and sport cycling. It is a series of studio images in which the subjects were invited to ride their bikes on a stationary trainer at full exertion to see what their bicycle face might look like. The series is meant to be a light-hearted, tongue-in-cheek reference to the historical anti-feminist ideas against cycling, by showing the strength, intensity and determination of women cyclists today."
Featured riders Adriana and Marana Peralta say: “Our experience riding our bikes in Toronto has been the most amazing thing -- something that we couldn't do in Mexico. As doctors, we know that exercise is really good in a lot of aspects. "
dandyhorse is pleased to present this essay celebrating women cyclists in our city -- just in time for Bike Month! You can read more about "bicycle face" here.
We'll be rolling out each profile one at a time throughout Bike Month and adding all the links here.