The Silk Road: A Living History

Embark on a life-affirming quest across continents and cultures — without leaving home.

The Silk Road: A Living History is now online! The virtual edition presents the photographs from the original outdoor exhibition alongside video and audio content, photo essays, and travel writing, allowing visitors to explore even more of the Silk Road.

Explore the virtual exhibition


The exhibition is a visual travelogue of adventurer Christopher Wilton-Steer’s 2019 expedition along the Silk Road. Kicking off his journey in Venice and finishing off in Beijing, the UK-based writer and photographer traversed 40,000 kilometres over four months, documenting the architecture, the natural beauty, the history, and, most importantly, the people he encountered along the way.


The result is a stirring collection of photographs celebrating the stunning diversity of places and people that populate the Silk Road. At the same time, The Silk Road: A Living History is a powerful testament to the common humanity we all share and the deeply rooted connections that exist between disparate cultures.


First-person perspective


Accompanying Wilton-Steer’s gorgeous photos are first-person testimonies revealing what he heard, thought, and felt while looking through his camera’s viewfinder. Through these personal stories, you will meet people and communities who left a lasting impression on Wilton-Steer. And perhaps you will be inspired to one day make a Silk Road pilgrimage of your own!


Canadian debut


The Silk Road: A Living History made its Canadian debut at the Aga Khan Museum in October 2021 and is adapted from a photo series first exhibited in London, England, by the Aga Khan Foundation. For more information about the project, including in-depth stories and details, visit




Christopher Wilton-Steer is a travel photographer and writer based in London. His professional and personal work takes him to remote and off-the-beaten-track locations across Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.

Through his photography, Christopher is interested in exploring less well-documented and often misunderstood parts of the world in an effort to build bridges of interest and understanding between distant cultures. Ultimately, he wishes for his photographs to encourage others to take the road less travelled and explore, experience, and encounter new places, people, and cultures.


Christopher's work has been featured in magazines and newspapers around the world, including National Geographic, The Guardian, CNN, Financial Times, and Der Spiegel, among others. 


The Silk Road: A Living History is presented in partnership with the Aga Khan Foundation, UK, the Aga Khan Park, and the Ismaili Centre Toronto.


Exhibition Project Team: Stephanie Radchenko, Marianne Fenton, and Sarah Chate

Presented in partnership with

Logos for the Aga Khan Foundation, the Ismaili Centre Toronto, and the Aga Khan Park


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