by Jochen Gerner

Grande Vitesse

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Grande Vitesse translated from French is high speed. The artist Jochen Gerner sent this book over explaining it merely as “railway drawings”. As I opened it up I couldn’t help but ooh and ahh aloud. The interior of the book is a long accordion of tan paper. Tiny drawings in dark blue ink fill every space on the page. The drawings are of what Jochen sees out the window while he rides through Nancy to Paris. There are tiny sketches of architecture- houses, silo, buildings, towers, windmills and power lines, vehicles like cars, trucks and tractors, lots of nature- bushes, trees, grasses, animals and all sorts of signage. The drawings are sometimes labeled and dated. As you get further and further along on your travels through the book, the drawings become more and more just layers of horizon lines. Towards the very end of book whole pages are filled with line. I am imagining the train was moving very fast until everything became a blur of lines. I tried to find some online shop to buy this gorgeous book (it’s hardcover with the title embossed in the book cloth) but failed. The editor is L’Association and this book is a special collection only sold to special editor’s supporters and in some particular places. UPDATE: You can purchase a copy of this book by emailing lhydre@lassociation.fr- To buy the book you have to be a member of L’Association. It cost 22 € for the membership in the United States and then the price of “Grande Vitesse” is 29 € (no shipping costs).
See more of Jochen’s work here.

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