Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The two highways.

Now that I've been the length of Route 66 and have gone about 2500k on the Trans Canada it's clear to me that these highways, although both defining features of the North American landscape, are very different. The Trans Canada is a pragmatic strip of asphalt that is about moving stuff vast distances between locations. It's efficient, and everything is contained within the enclosure of the vehicles eating up the kilometres. Route 66 is about place names, people, and the stories they tell. It's landscape changes quickly, and the communities that are scattered along it's windy path are just barely a ghost of what they once were. The one piece of the Trans Canada that reminds me of Route 66 is the Fraser Canyon in B.C. I lived there as a child in Boston Bar. This stretch of highway was bypassed about 30 years ago by the Coquihalla Highway that goes from Hope to Kamloops. This left the small communities along the old Trans Canada economically devastated. Yale, Boston Bar, Lytton, Spence's Bridge, are all just shadows of what they were when they serviced the travellers moving down the Number 1. Like the Interstate Highway in the States, the Coquihalla was, and is, about efficiency. There's no room for individual stories when it's all about the most expedient way to move stuff. One result of what I've learned is that the focus for me on the Trans Canada has shifted away from the mirror object and is more about the process, which is manifesting in a number of new series.

A new project from the refocus that has occurred on the Trans Canada:

16 images from the back of the van. 

Kamloops Daily News

The Kamloops Daily News ran a little piece about Seed Engine. Check it out here: