Life Nerve, 2017, DK
The railway between Tommerup and Assens in the rural part of Funen in Denmark has been abandoned for many years. It was once a central nerve system for transporting goods between rural cities. Today tourists and locals can cycle on custom-built railroad bikes. As a part of a cultural project, a Copenhagen-based art collective collaborated with locals to revitalise the stretch of railroad tracks passing through multiple cities.
The main idea was to transform the railroad bikes into a culturally collaborative caravan that would ride through the landscape. In each city, the local residents could participate and contribute. For a few days, the bikes rode through the countryside with stops in towns along the way.
At each stop, the local city would have a small celebration with musicians, sharing of local projects etc. The transformation of the bikes was inspired by the mutant vehicles at the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert, USA. The intention was to create an animal-like caravan moving through the landscape (figure 5).
This way, the old local railway would be revived as a cultural lifeblood for creativity and diversity. The concept was thought of as recurring yearly. Each year this caravan would travel through the landscape and the small cities and become a way for the local communities to construct cultural meaning-making around the old railway tracks.
Project was made as a part of illutron with Bent Damsbo, Niels Thästrup, Jorgen Svenstrup.