My introduction to La Frida was by coincidence almost a month ago, walking through Santo Antonio when I caught eyes with Diana, La Frida’s in-house mechanic, and we both gave that “Hey black girl” recognition nod! I continued walking but something told me to go back and ask for a photo as the framing through the mental gate was on point… Plus how dope is it to see a black woman mechanic here in Brazil when the representation of black women is mostly singing and dancing? Fast forward, a week later I was back at Casa La Frida to interview the founder Lívia Suarez and Diana… Funny how it all started from this look, “I see you siSTAR“
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La Frida is an organisation made up of black cycle-activists whose goal is to include and strengthen mobility in women’s transportation plans and also a tool for emancipating women in society. It started as a movement that combines bicycle and street art, with aim stimulate female representation in urban mobility, amplifying the voices of black women occupying spaces – using the bike an instrument of empowerment and transformation in society.
“The bike was the healing tool in a moment in my life. A lot of black women have connected with the bike but they don’t know how to ride it… Bike is connected to everything; healing, mental and physical health, sports...” – Lívia, founder of La Frida
(Translation of video interview: Hi, my name is Livia Suarez, I’m founde of La Frida Bike project. It started in 2015 at Federal University of Bahia. I was a Literature student. Marilu Isabel and I were tired of working for others. We wanted to have our own business. We didn’t have a lot of money. I used to ride my bike around the city. We decided to create a bike cafe. A coffee shop with poetry music and books. Then the project has been growing. We created a new project to offer new ways of mobility in the city. Then we created “Preta, come by Bike“. We offer free classes to black women. They learn how to ride the bike. In 2017 we won a prize that allowed us to ope La Frida House…” – Livia Suarez, founder of La Frida)
As well as being a safe space for events centring black issues, La Frida is also a bike cafe, offers workshops, bike mechanic training (a course which Diana was on and has since become the in-house mechanic), bike hire, and free bike lessons for black women. This is a powerful way to uplift black women in Brazil who are often the most marginalised and erased in society.
Salute La Frida!
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Visiting Salvador? Find La Frida bikes at
Salvador, Bahia, Brazil 40301280
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