Art film and bicylce culture from 2006 until today

Launch in 2006

The International Cycling Film Festival was established in December 2005 in Bochum by the chairman of the cycling club Team Hollandse Frietjes – non-professional cycling, Gernot Mühge. The festival launched in September 2006 under the name “International Cycling Video Festival” (German: Internationales Festival des Radsport-Videos). Featured were 17 films from the USA, Scotland, Switzerland, Austria and Germany. The first three festivals took place at “Goldkante”, a club for the local art scene and social-cultural events in Bochum. During these years the festival was arranged as a three-days festival, containing two film evenings at the first two days and ending with a time trial for both cyclists and movie makers at the third day. The laudatory for the Goldene Kurbel in these years was Frank Hörner, director of the Theater Kohlenpott, which is a children and youth theatre in the Flottmann-Hallen, Herne. He facilitated the transfer of the ICFF from Bochum to nearby Herne.

Begleiter des ICFF von Beginn an: DJ Mono an seinen Philips-Mono-Turntables in der Goldkante.

A Polish German festival since 2011

In Summer 2011, during a meeting on future cooperation among bicycle activists in the Ruhr district held in the bike kitchen in Dortmund, Aleksander Kopia, founder of the Silesian Bicycle Initiative – the Śląska Inicjatywa Rowerowa –, Poland met people from the ICFF. From that point the Polish initiative is a partner of the ICFF. First guest performances in Poland occurred in the Silesian Voivodeship in Katowice and in Częstochowa in summer 2012. This gave rise to the idea of setting up a second ICFF in Poland based on equal partnership between the Polish and German makers of the ICFF. Hence 2013 the program of the festival was shown simultaneously in Herne and Częstochowa. Furthermore, a new prize for bicycle-related films was created. The award was named Trzy złote szprychy – the Three Golden Spokes – and is the audience award of the festival’s Polish edition. Since that time the ICFF is under the patronage of the German Consulate General in Kraków. The Polish festival edition is supported by the Goethe-Institut, a German cultural association encouraging international cultural exchange.

The festival today

In 2014 the Dutch movie maker Erwin Zantinga from Groningen became a new member of the ICFF board after he presented his film “Two wheels and a hayfork” at the 9th ICFF in Herne personally. Due to this new cooperation between Dutch, Polish and German festival makers Groningen became an additional venue off the ICFF. In the same time the makers of the ICFF started collaboration with the party Alliance ’90/The Greens of the municipality of Wiesbaden. As a result, the German Film Heritage Foundation Murnau Stiftung was found as the fifth fixed venue of the ICFF. It is now a trinational festival with board members from and fixed venues in Poland, the Netherlands and Germany.

With its further expansion also the approach of the festival was more and more outlined. Nowadays its mission is two-fold. First, the ICFF focuses on the bicycle as a subject of cinematic art. This part of the festival is represented by movie makers like Werther Germondari, Michael Dudok de Wit, Jörn Staeger, or Michael Klöfkorn, who contributed to the festival. Second, the ICFF screens films as a means of expression in the fast growing bicycle culture. It is a forum for movie makers from the bicycle community like Lucas Brunelle or Casey Neistat.

Das polnisch-deutsche Team des ICFF im Kino Iluzja, Częstochowa, im Jahr 2012