Project X 1497-1999

Journey onward with Vasco da Gama on his first voyage from Portugal to India in 1497. This multimedia poetry installation is now about two-thirds finished, according to the author, and continues to become more complex and densely layered with each adjustment. Partly drawn from an actual diary of the voyage, partly fictionalized, heavily annotated from other historical sources, these pages are thick with hyperlinks. Almost every word spins you off to somewhere else. This is a history lesson, a social critique and a beautiful piece of web design. The site looks like a journal, with a parchment background, script-like fonts and woodcut graphics. Trace da Gama’s route on the pop-up map, then click on some obscure waypoint on the African coast for the relevant journal entries. Read through the journal from start to finish, or wander off through the text at random, stepping from one link to another as they catch your fancy. Getting lost was part of the voyage in 1497, and so it is here. (DW)

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