SERGIO GALAN (Based in Madrid)

[The urban cyclist] is slipping into another geography; one that is eminently poetic because it offers the possibility of finding places that can only be visited independently […] The cyclist can re-evaluate distances and reach places that are not accessible by public transportation, or limited to fixed routes. - Marc Auge from “In praise of Bicycles”
50 years ago, the band Kraftwerk marveled the world with their electronic songs that acclaimed the idols of modern civilization: technology, machines and speed. Their “Trans Europe Express” promised an endless trip on high-speed trains, which deserve to be reconsidered in the era of the standard tourist. Dreams of endless industrialization are now broken and new ways of living are appearing through the cracks. Now, speed needs to slow down to a stroll.
With TransEuropeSlow the artists propose a collective exploration of cities in order to locate places that tell different stories. As a cyclist it is easy to connect with other peripheral locations in the city and discover alternative routes to explore hidden streets. After sourcing new places with local communities they will get lost in the city and record the itineraries using a camera mounted on the bike.

The project is interested in negotiating modern cities and finding places that tell contemporary stories which move beyond tourist attractions, stereotypes, city brands and common places in the uniform city centre. Bikes slow down the normal pace of urban exploration and allow hidden, distant areas of the city to become visible and accessible. This translocated cycling journey seamlessly links the explorations of various European cities, connecting these urban locations and highlighting their differences, and similarities.

Partners: Produced by Medialab-Prado in Madrid and adapted by m-cult for the Media Facades Festival in Helsinki and FACT in Liverpool

TransEurope Slow by Sergio Galan © Sergio Galan
TransEurope Slow by Sergio Galan at MFF 2013 © Kimmo Mustonen
TransEurope Slow by Sergio Galan © FACT, Liverpool

Artist biography

Sergio Galan is a Spanish interaction designer and also an engineer whose work seeks to transform good ideas into real, useable products which create positive social interaction and encourage human communication and shared experience via technology. Aside from working with Diaz, Galan also develops projects under the name Tinkerista.

For the past few years Sergio has embraced eclecticism, research as a working practice, and has moved between the fields of software design, digital art and urban computing. In these fields he has developed projects related to environmental issues, democracy and participation. Involving people at every stage of his work is vital to Sergio and his practise aims to develop not only finalized “products”, but also platforms in which people can interact and express themselves.

Currently, Sergio works in research and cultural mediacy as part of Madrid´s Medialab-Prado creative software group, and develops technological projects independently. Together with Victor Diaz, Sergio Galan is also part of the Uncoded Collective – a transdisciplinary team who work creating real-time interactive technologies. They are masters of rapid prototyping tools and big believers of open source technologies and knowledge.


Tech info

Materials: Hacked bicycle pedals, park bench, urban screen, computer with Internet access, custom software



6.9.2013 MADRID @ Medialab-Prado, 9pm-11pm
22.-25.09.2013 LIVERPOOL @ FACT
22.-25.09.2013 HELSINKI @ Made in Kallio, 8pm-11pm