Atomic Road

October, 1962, the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Clement Greenberg, the art critic of the 20th century, is more interested in silencing his rival Harold Rosenberg than with the threat of nuclear destruction. Greenberg is driving from New York to the Emma Lake artist colony in Saskatchewan, where he intends to shut Rosenberg up once and for all. With him is infamous Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser. The 1950s were Greenberg’s decade. Abstract expressionism was the genre he championed. Yet by 1962, everywhere Greenberg looks he is bedevilled by Andy Warhol’s Campbell Soup cans, just as everywhere Althusser looks he sees capitalist decadence. Althusser, who escaped prosecution for strangling his wife on an insanity plea, is heading to a Saskatchewan hospital for LSD therapy. Pursuing them is Jean Claude Piche, a veteran of the conflicts in Indochina and Algeria, contracted to execute Althusser for the unpunished murder. Greenberg, however, has plans for Althusser to commit one more killing before Jean Claude gets hold of him. Yet before this urbane trio can cross from North Dakota into Saskatchewan they meet the enigmatic arch patriot Swen, who has plans of his own. ATOMIC ROAD charts its own comic course between historical accuracy and fictional invention.