Waiting for Volvo

Artist / Speaker
Patrick Laviolette

FRIDAY, MAY 19TH 2017, 6:00pm


Dr Patrick Laviolette, profesor antropologii na uniwersytecie Tallińskim, podróżował autostopem od początku sowjej kariery akademickiej, traktując ów sposób transportu jako metodę poszukiwania podmiotów badawczych. Od niedawna sam autostop stał się tematem jego badań. Dr. Patrick zaprezentuje część swojej pracy nad autostopem podczas wystawy „Art of Hitchhiking” dając wykład/performance zatytułowany „Waiting for Volvo”. Wykład będzie miał miejsce 19 maja (piątek) o 18:00 a po jego zakończeniu zapraszamy na małe przyjęcie koktajlowe.




Patrick Laviolette (PhD), Professor of Anthropology at Tallinn University, has been hitchhiking since the beginning of his academic career, using this means of transport as a way to encounter research subjects. Hitchhiking itself has recently become one of his research topics. He will present some of his findings at the occasion of the ‘Art of Hitchhiking Exhibition’, giving a talk/public performance entitled “Waiting for Volvo”. The lecture, scheduled on Friday 19 May at 6:00pm, will be followed by a cocktail.




The founding member and lead signer/songwriter of the band Talking Heads, David Byrne, penned the lyrics to ‘Road to Nowhere’ in 1984, just five years before the death of Samuel Beckett.


The song resonates with one of the playwright’s more famous theater works. In joyful, almost frivolous ways, both speak to the dystopian ideas of doom, absurdity and waiting for nothing.


Hitchhiking shares many characteristics with existentialism. One main thing differs however — when we wait by the road, we wait for a reason. Byrne is an avid bicycle activist. Beckett (like Marcel Duchamp) and a different D. Byrne were chess enthusiasts. All, I think, would look approvingly on hitchhiking.


Also known as ‘auto-stop’, hitchhiking is both an anomalous socio-cultural phenomenon which is at the same time iconic to at least half of last century’s motorised transport. This talk — partially framed as a public performance — will consider the contemporary place of human/non-human assemblage of cars, roadscapes, mobility and travelling the road to everywhere


Patrick is Editor-in-Chief of Social Anthropology/Anthropology Sociale. In 2018 he will take over as the editor of the Anthropological Journal of European Cultures. A fan of ‘the Mighty Boosh’, he does research on risky landscapes, material culture and a few other things. More information: goo.gl/BSrAZW