Image of the Road is an ongoing research project by artists: Helen Kirwan and Simon Pruciak. This is the low resolution version of a video created for single screen presentation during the Image of the Road exhibition at the United Nations, Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland, February-March 2014.
During the summer of 2013, the artists documented the U.N. European route known as the E40
from Calais, France to Ridder, northeast Kazakhstan near the Russian and Chinese borders. Together with architect Jarek Karpik, they travelled by motorcar approximately 17,000 kilometres, for 54 days, through France, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan and return.
The E40 is trans-continental, long-distance trade route which unites ten nations. Conceived by United Nations to assist Europe’s regeneration after the Second World War, it facilitates communication across Europe and Central Asia as a corridor for the transmission of goods, cultures, people, ideas, beliefs and inventions. Parts follow prehistoric ancient pathways and sections of the so-called silk routes.
The E40 is also a concept and a complex physical and trans-national, communal social space within a multi-cultural web of connection.
The artists recorded and collected many forms of visual, textual and performed representations of mobility. The Image of the Road exhibition United Nations, Palais des Nations, Geneva explored time and space, the poetic and the prosaic, the phenomenology of movement and of human experience and identity on the E40. This video is a carefully selected collage of locations, situations, activities, and ambient sounds which offer a distillation of the essence and spirit of the E40. All rights reserved.