Five guys in a ragged station wagon covered with bumper stickers, speeding towards a destination unknown. Iggy Pop, shirtless, is driving and grinning frantically. Jack Kerouac is riding shotgun, high on an unknown substance, filling sheets of paper with frenzied scribbling, scratching “NOTHING BEHIND ME, EVERYTHING AHEAD OF ME”. In the back, James Ballard is licking the window. Filippo Marinetti, in the middle, leans forward and shouts in a thick Italian accent: “Let’s go! Friends, away! Let’s go! WE MUST SHAKE AT THE GATES OF LIFE, TEST THE BOLTS AND HINGES, LET’S GO!” Wim Wenders is gazing out of the window, solemnly thinking “THE YANKS HAVE COLONIZED OUR SUBCONSCIOUS”.
A line of trucks approach and roar past, Iggy hoots and shouts. Suddenly he swerves and pulls the car over on the side of the road, where two men are sitting on the roadside, wearing similar black-rimmed glasses and checkered shirts. Iggy sticks his head out of the window, beckons them to come over. They introduce themselves as the Strugatsky brothers and ask in broken English for a ride. They scramble on the back seat, and as the car accelerates, they share their sandwiches with the company. One brother says “PUT IN YOUR TEETH”, the other whispers “LET’S GO”.
Kerouac turns up the radio to Sinatra’s ‘My Way’ and hums along as the car travels on.
Sirens howl. The oncoming road is jammed, a motorbike gang stands nearby, one of them has collided with several cars. Squeezed on top of Marinetti’s lap, Ballard excitedly opens the window, leans out and twists his neck to get a better view, screaming “QUICK, LET’S MAKE LOVE, BEFORE YOU DIE!” Iggy snarls at him, speeds up and says “Let’s get a drink boys. In a couple of miles we’ll hit the Finish Line Diner, let’s grab some of them drinks, they say they give you brain freeze!”
Jack Kerouac, On the Road, 1957
Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, The Founding and Manifesto of Futurism, 1909 (trans. 1973)
Wim Wenders, Im Lauf der Zeit, 1976
Arkady Strugatsky, Boris Strugatsky, Roadside Picnic, 1971
The Normal, Warm Leatherette, 1978
- Grand opening, Friday 15th July, 20:00 – 01:00 Come celebrate the first night of ”/|\” with all the artists, an overdose of slush puppies and music by DJ George and the band The Unborn Brothers. The Unborn Brothers are playing at 10 pm, George will start around 23:00.
- Truckers dinner, Thursday 21th July, 20:00 – 00:00 Gear back and park your cars, vans, trucks or horses. Join us in our one night only Truckers dinner, were we will serve you a deliciously rich meal paired with slush puppies that will make your head spin. Food is cash only and 10 euros each.
- Lecture Ruben Beentjes and screening, Friday 29th July, 19:30 – 23:30 Being on the road, roadworks, speed and highways have since they were first constructed been a source of inspiration for movies, books, stories and philosophy. In that light we have invited Ruben Beentjes to give a lecture. “Speed and death, the road to McPhysics” He will connect literature from, for example, Kerouac and Burroughs, film, philosophy and the McDrive.
Ruben Beentjes: “Although there still is a nostalgic and romantic longing to see the highway as a kind of ragged buffer zone between adventure and new encounters battling boredom and futility, the metaphor of the highway as being the aorta that would connect life might be a bit outdated. In many contemporary movies, the road and its network reoccurs as a theme – often being portrayed in a way that is more standoffish. No engines that are racing their way through a hot summer night, but the sound of monotonous humming. What we see is a network far from above, in a kind of sublime inertia; a motionless form of moving. It appears to always have been this way, leading nowhere and having no clear history. These highways don’t serve any purpose outside of their realm, but have become a purpose themselves. If this network still has to symbolize a blood circulation, it would be that of a zombie, or the apparatus that exists solely to survive.”
The lecture will be in Dutch and starts at 20:00h. Afterwards we are screening the documentary Magic Trip (2011).
- Road movie night, Thursday 4th August, 20:00 – 00:00 We all picked our favorite road movie and will be showing two tonight. Come hang out, see the show and watch a movie. Film titles will be announced soon.
Text by Arda van Tiggelen
Public program by Doran Schmaal