Sculptural Maps Tell the Story of Cities’ Darkest Moments

Sculptural Maps Tell the Story of Cities’ Darkest Moments

City maps are the tools of the modern urban explorer, but they also carry the scars of the history that helped create them. Matthew Picton, a British-born artist living in the United States, combines cartography and artistic intervention to illustrate defining events in a city’s past.

Picton constructs sculptural city maps out of paper, book covers and other materials, then intervenes on the maps to visually represent the trauma of a particular past event in that city’s history. Each map is based on historical accounts of events and their damage.

“The sculptures while fictional creations, are in part documentary records, the line of truth being firmly attached to the cartographic evidence,” Picton writes in his Fictional Perspectives of Urban History.

In perhaps the most emotional work for a contemporary American audience, a burned out patch of paper and smoke covers the part of a map of Lower Manhattan where the World Trade... keep reading

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