September 2019, Je suis partout / I am everywhere / the beak and the eye and the heart


A beak, an eye and a heart, all over Europe’s motorways.

Travelling through Europe by road is something I’ve found myself doing fairly frequently over the last few years, probably less of a strain on the environment and as I can’t actually drive it’s fairly low stress these days due to the proliferation of magic devices that can tell someone where to go.

Which leads to more time on my side looking out of the window. And over the past few years I’ve noticed a thing appearing a lot. Like every couple of underpasses, or maybe a few in a row in Paris, or on the other side of the road in Belgium.

I could kind of count on them appearing from around Strasbourg in France up to Belgium/Luxembourg/Netherlands but I’ve not managed to capture a decent image until now, or able to describe it well enough to find more information elsewhere. And it was clear they were paper symbols stuck to objects, so they might not actually be where I remember them being before.

Earlier this year I did manage though, I had set a location reminder on my phone in passing Luxembourg knowing we would come back the same way in three weeks and grabbed a couple of images on the way back. Posted one to twitter and someone better located outside of my Rostigraben focused microscope pointed me in the right direction.


The artist responsible is one Thierry Jaspart, and he’s somewhat cagey about what this symbol means but the work undertaken to get these symbols across the continent is nothing short of gargantuan for something that probably doesn’t register for many travellers.

Anyway, if you’re interested further in the weird hieroglyph on European motorways with a beak and an eye and a heart, then maybe direct your clicks to Theirry or this article but I just wanted to put up some keywords in English for any other baffled traveller.