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STAND UP UND GO! - Photos of the St.James’ Way

»A real journey does not capture you.« Hape Kerkeling (German comedian)

In October 2007 I started my journey with the theme "the journey is more Important than the destination" in  St. Jean Pied de Port in the Pyrenees. After 38 days and 900 walked kilometres across the North of Spain via Sanitago de Compostela, I finally reached Cap Finisterre, the western end of the "former" world, the beginning of the Atlantic Ocean.

»El camino comienza en su casa.« – »The journey begins at your doorstep.« That is what they respond in Spain when asking for the beginning of the St. James' Way.  There is no such thing as the actual St.James’ Way.  But the idea of a way leading you to salvation already caused a hiking boom in the Middle Ages. The pilgrims back than were dressed in sandals, a huge cap, a shell as identification and a long walking stick as support or if need for self protection, on their way through Spain, via Santiago de Compostella, to the grave of the Holy Jacob. They made this exhausting and even perilous trip in the deep believe that the Holy Jacob would relieve them from all their sins.

In our society, which is shaped by technique and mobility, information overload and restlessness, many people decide to undertake this exhausting journey. They do this on purpose. They want to experience the tradition of a Christian pilgrimage in order to search for happiness, to have time for themselves and just to feel like a human being again.

What comes before happiness is the decision to be happy. »Happiness is right in front of you. You just have to catch it.« A moment appears and as quickly as it came, it vanishes  The same happens while taking a picture.  Photography tries to catch moments before life goes on.

After all life is about standing up, going on, moving on, being open for something different and learning. It is about going into oneself and going with somebody else on your own and in front of everybody. Stand up and go.

Julia Zimmermann, January 2008

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