A poetic meditation on life and death, by one of the most renowned and respected film-makers and intellectuals of our time.
In November 1974, when Werner Herzog was told that his mentor Lotte Eisner, the film-maker and critic, was dying in Paris, he set off to walk there from Munich, ‘in full faith, believing that she would stay alive if I came on foot’. Along the way he recorded what he saw, how he felt, and what he experienced, from the physical discomfort of the journey to moments of rapture. It is a remarkable narrative – part pilgrimage, part meditation, and a confrontation between a great German Romantic imagination and the contemporary world. This edition of the book is being published for the first time as a classic piece of proto-psychogeography, to coincide with the fortieth anniversary of the legendary director’s walk.
Herzog's existential journey through a hostile winter landscape is one of the great modern pilgrimages - a record of physical suffering, of hallucination and ecstatic revelation, of portents and animals, of the wreckage of history and myth. Of Walking in Ice has the eerie power of the best fairtales. It hits you with the force of dreams and leaves you with the taste of snow-filled air.
'Surely the strangest, strongest walking book I know, it tells the story of a winter pilgrimage, made in desperation and in hope. At once a diary, a blizzard of weather and memories, and the record of a ritual: only Herzog could have written this weird, slender classic.' Robert Macfarlane
Herzog's pilgrimage is a fugue and an absurdist comedy as rich as anything in his cinema'. Iain Sinclair