For centuries, Asia and Europe were thought to be separate and distinct. But where exactly is the physical demarcation between them? Is it the Ural Mountains or Caucasus Mountains? Or do the linked bodies of water from the Sea of Marmara, Black Sea, and Caspian Sea to the Ural River separate Asia from Europe? The exact line of physical demarcation between Asia and Europe is still disputed and remains inconclusive.
The division of Eurasia is merely of a cultural construct, and history confirms this. Rather than defined by its supposed division, the horizontality of the Eurasian landmass has allowed various inventions, religions and languages to spread to the far reaches of East and West. Old Silk Roads, New Silk Roads, and the like are proof that the geography of the continent is a unifying force. Eurasia is a single continent, not only by its physical attributes, but also by its shared history.
Today, Eurasia is once again becoming one. Besides the Trans-Siberian Railways, now the New Eurasian Land Bridge connects Lianyungang with Rotterdam to allow shipments of materials from China to Europe. There are more proposals for new railroads and highways between China, India and Southeast Asia, while Russia has even proposed tunnels and bridges across the Bering Strait to North America. Furthermore, there are also many newly built and proposed oil and gas pipelines that will remake the Middle East and Central Asia a land of connections and exchanges, as they were during the Old Silk Roads era and beyond.
Imagining New Eurasia is a multi-year project to research and visualize the historical precedents and contemporary reconstructions of the continent as a union of Europe and Asia. The project imagines new relations between East and West, and a renewed identity for Eurasia. Through a narrative sequence of three distinctive chapters, each with different subjects, Imaging New Eurasia Project will present the importance of cities, networks and territories. In so doing, the project envisions how the movements of commerce, migrations and cultural exchanges could bring about an age of balance, where greater relations and understandings between different societies could help avoid clashes of civilizations. Central to this project is the New Eurasian Pavilion that will house panoramic projections of visualizations, accompanied by participatory exhibitions, publications and workshops.
Imagining New Eurasia is a project by Kyong Park.
Here, There, and Everywhere: Eurasian Cities
Director of Visualization: Jaekyung Jung
Project Architect: B.A.R.E
Curator: Jihoi Lee
November 25, 2015 – July 15, 2016
The inaugural exhibition of the Imagining New Eurasia Project looks at the cultural terrain of Eurasia through the localized lens of different “cities.” The intention is to visualize the structures of cultural transitions, exchanges, and interactions between different places. Primarily consisting of three parts, “Atlas of a New Geography,” “City Mix,” and “Urban Poetry,” the exhibition seeks to animate a new way of understanding the relations between here, there, and everywhere of Eurasia.
Featured image : City Mix: Explodicity, Kyong Park, Image Courtesy of the Imagining New Eurasia Project & The Asia Culture Center, ACC Creation