James - Lenka

July 2008 / long journey & documentation / made with James Price

Between the 1st and 31st July 2008 James Price and I travelled from the hamlet of James in France, to Lenka, a village of two hundred inhabitants in Slovakia, in as straight a line as possible. We cycled around 1300km and where necessary took short trips by train, boat and on foot. We traversed dirt roads, motorways, vineyards, sunflower fields, a lake, the cities of Vienna and Munich, the foothills of the Alps and strangers back gardens guided only by twenty eight long, narrow paper maps. At night we camped or stayed in lodgings if they happened to lie along the route.

The documentation of the journey includes official visits with the mayors of both James and Lenka during which they lent their signatures testifying to our presence. Each day of the journey we made a pair of Polaroid photographs. Every ten kilometers we cycled, we photographed the road ahead. In both villages we met the inhabitants and were invited to eat foraged wild mushrooms, venison goulash, cake, and drink vodka with them. On reaching Lenka we sent postcards to the residents of James whom we had met 28 days and 1300km previously.

Examples from the 28 pairs of daily Polaroid photographs documenting the journey, by James Price