Paul Ramírez Jonas
Artist in the Public Realm

Ghost of Progress, 2002

View the video here 


MATERIALS: Single channel DVD, 22 minutes.

    In this video the future appears as an already nostalgic symbol and the present as a place where progress has as an uncertain direction.  The video was shot from a camera mounted on the handle bar of a bike as it traversed a city in the Third World. At the opposite end of the handle bar rested a model of the Concorde. The resulting video gives the illusion that the plane is flying through the city.  The artifice is always evident, the sound of the pedaling is constant, and the discrepancy in scale is unavoidable. The utopian hopes, and  commercial realities embodied by the Concorde are juxtaposed against a background of survival street commerce, stores, new and old cars, public transport, noise, decaying historic buildings, smog, moldy modern buildings, and daily life.