Bicycling enthusiasts Stan Engelbrecht and Nic Grobler have started a project that looks at South Africa’s bicycle culture. Their project also asks why there are so little bicycle commuters on the road. Engelbrecht is known for his previous books - African Salad and Miss Beautiful.
The duo want to raise funds to turn their project into a self-published, full-colour, hard-cover book. They will be traveling around the country, meeting every day South Africans and photographing them from the vantage point of their own bicycles.
The project will focus on who rides bicycles, why do they ride them and why do they love it. Check out their website www.bicycleportraits.co.za to get a glimpse of what the project is all about. The site is updated as the project develops and they’re working on an iPhone app that lets followers know when new content has been uploaded.
The project will also investigate the use of bicycles as an important means of transport and the people that rely on their bikes to get them to where they need to be. It tries to establish why bicycles are not more widely used, especially in the major city centres.
Engelbrecht and Groler want to highlight the benefits of cycling with this project. Cycling is cost-effective, it helps you keep fit, it can provide a sense of independence for many and it is environmentally friendly.
The long-term goal of the project is to assist the previously disadvantaged cycling community by teaching them bicycle maintenance, abd providing them with the necessities like helmets, tyres, tubes and locks. Ultimately, the hope is to encourage and empower more people to use cycling as a means of transport.