the map as art
the map as art the map as art
mar 31, 2010

the map as art

l:’world map’, 2006 two thousand layers of cotton cloth by ai weiwei

r: ‘map of china’, 2004 joined tieli wood by ai weiwei

authors: katharine harmon, gayle clemens publisher: princeton architectural press year: 2009 size: 256 pages, 25.4 x 22.9 cm isbn: 9781568987620 _____________________________________________________________ designboom rating:


maps can be simple tools, comfortable in their familiar form, or they can lead to different destinations: places turned upside down or inside out, territories riddled with marks understood only by their maker, realms connected more to the interior mind than to the exterior world.

content ‘the map as art’ tracks the work of contemporary artists such as ai weiwei, olafur eliasson, jasper johns, julian schnabel… exploring the artistic potential found within the practice of cartography.

typically seen as something utilitarian, promising routes into and out of the unknown, the book reveals 360 artistic visions of the map. the creative interpretations provide conceptual documentations of our changing geography, tracking history and our political state. the highlighted pieces act as an expression of one’s travels, global cultural transformations, the world’s ephemeral nature, presenting myths and dreams of imagined utopias.

is it for me? from the homebody to the avid traveller, this book will make one appreciate the art of cartography. it is an interesting compilation of contemporary artistic pieces exploring how the map can be utilized as an informative document or artistic medium, or both simultaneously. ‘fault lines’, 2003 altered atlas by doug beube ‘souvenir’, 2004 folded souvenir tea towels by susanna castleden‘doily portrait’, 2004 cut brooklyn bus map and lace work by meredith mcneal ‘london subway’, 2007 red cotton stitched on rice paper by susan stockwell ‘wear and tear’, 2003 rubber mat by jonathan parsons ‘oildale’, 2006 constructed map by greg colson

‘town of thorns’, 1991 roads spiked with thorns by guillermo kuitca

_____________________________________________________________ designboom ratings: ……………………. interesting ………………. good read, worth a look …………. very good ……. excellent, recommended . must have_____________________________________________________________

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
    all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    art news

    keep up with our daily and weekly stories
    501,537 subscribers
    - see sample
    - see sample