I Drive Therefore I Am

Translation of all 8 essays (plus Thanks and Introduction) by Alexandra Cox.


This is my third biggest published translation, so please click here to read some scanned pages. Here are the first couple of paragraphs from the introduction by Museum Tinguely director Roland Wetzel:

“I think that cars today are almost the exact equivalent of the great Gothic cathedrals: I mean the supreme creation of an era, conceived with passion by unknown artists, and consumed in image if not in usage by a whole population which appropriates them as a purely magical object.” Roland Barthes, Paris, 1957

“The automobile constitutes perhaps the only magical/mythical middle of society, beyond all geographic, state, national, religious and socio-cultural boundaries,” writes Hartmut Böhme in his article within this catalog. This “magical/mythical” stands at the center of the exhibition, “Car Fetish.” Spatially, the exhibition unfolds around Damián Ortega’s work Cosmic Thing (Fig. p. 305 – 307), which is positioned in the axis of a large wheel around which ten historical and topical areas are arranged in concentric segments. These exhibit a representative selection of artworks from the past one hundred years or so, in order to close with a chapter on Jean Tinguely who, as artist, Formula 1 fan, meta-maxi top-speed driver, and causer of accidents, was the prompt for this exhibition inspired by the automobile muse.