Danube Panorama Project

Background

With a length of - officially - 2857km, the Danube is not only Europeans second longest river (after the Volga), but also an important international waterway, today as it has been for centuries. It rises in the Black Forest in Germany and empties in the Black Sea in Romania. The massive river carries more water than the Nile and flows through - or forms part of the borders of - ten countries: Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia & Montenegro, Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, and Ukraine.

In conjunction with the Main-Danube Canal, the Rhine, Main and Danube make up a constantly navigable water way, connecting Hoek van Holland and the Rhine Delta around Rotterdam to the Danube Delta in the Black Sea, crossing the whole European continent.

The Danube is the only large river in Europe streaming from the West eastwards and in another strange opposition to that fact, its length is counted from its end at the lighthouse of Sulina backwards. The river is a natural waterway connecting Central with Eastern Europe, streaming down from its source in the heart of what once was the Austro-Hungarian Empire through the Balkans - from today's richest to today's poorest countries of Europe.

Since being one of the long-standing frontiers of the Roman Empire, the most important function of the Danube has never been that of a trade or shipping route - Danube never reached the activity of the Rhine - but in forming a border, a function which remains still valid today. The Danube, perhaps more than any other river, not just connects, but also separates.
The crucial symbolic and historical value of the Danube acts as a starting and reference point for this photographic and cartographic research and intense visualization effort of a natural cross section through today's Europe.

Aesthetically, the Danube Panorama Project also is a modern revival of a forgotten art form: The Panorama, one of the first immersive "media" or virtual arts, namely: The River Panorama (also know as Moving Panorama), a sub-class of the Panorama featuring river coastlines of the Hudson, Mississippi or Missouri River by unrolling (reportedly mile-long) canvas past the viewer, wich were highly popular events in North America through the late 19th Century..