We recently caught up with award-winning filmmaker, environmental advocate and SF Bicycle Coalition member Kristin Tieche to learn a little bit more about her and her art.
Kristin, a San Francisco native, feels “blessed to call the most beautiful city in the world” her home. She first started biking in San Francisco in the early ‘90s. Since then, she’s married her passion for filmmaking with her mission to protect the environment.
“My hope is that my films inspire people to reconnect with the earth again, and riding a bike is a very direct and powerful way to feel connected with your environment,” Kristin said. “Throughout my studies, I’ve found that top climate scientists cite building safe, protected bicycle infrastructure as a solution to climate change, which I find very empowering.”
A longtime SF Bicycle Coalition member, Kristin first joined in the early 2000s.
“Today, most of my close friends are members of the SF Bicycle Coalition. We all share an affinity for bicycles and the bicycle way of life,” Kristin said. “It’s a community where I connect with kindred spirits in an ever-changing city.”
When asked what she believes are the biggest barriers faced by women who want to bike, Kristin said, “In my conversations with women who choose not to bike in San Francisco, I found that they were too afraid to try it, or had tried it once and had a bad experience, so they decided: ‘Never again.’ I wanted to tell these important stories to illuminate how San Francisco can do much better for women who might want to bike. Photographer Adrienne Johnson and I collaborated to produce the first episode of Women Just Want to Be Safe, which told the story of a woman who was doored on the Embarcadero during her morning commute.
“We hope that City planners and decisionmakers will see these films, and they will be moved to make our streets safer and more inviting for women to bike,” Kristin said. “The film resonates with people because it’s a truth that bike advocates usually shy away from discussing. Safe urban planning has failed women, and we can do better.”
When asked what’s in her future, Kristin replied, “We want to develop a new series that focuses on the intersectionality of street redesign in San Francisco, and that includes voices that are typically underrepresented in the urban planning bubble. Now is the time to fight boldly for safe, connected infrastructure You can’t call San Francisco a bike-friendly city if it continues to neglect vulnerable groups and put them in harm’s way.
“I believe that women and bikes can save the world. Let’s do this.”
Want to meet more amazing people like Kristin? Join us at our next Women Bike SF Coffee Club on Friday, Dec. 1 at Mercury Cafe.