12 November 2013

Maps made by Matthew Picton

Paper cities and urban narratives - other words to describe the 3D maps of Matthew Picton. They represent immersive historical moments.

He uses relevant books and music to build maps of cities at key points in their history - London during WW2, New York at the turn of the millennium.
Bombed Coventry; the map includes sheet music and words from Britten's War Requiem (via)
The map of Dresden shows the effects of the Allied bombing in February 1945 (via)
London, 1666, shows the effects of the Great Fire and was made out of book covers of Daniel Defoe's "Journal of the Plague Year" -
I happened to see his show "Urban Narratives" last year and was struck not just by the detailed construction but by the choice of materials and the striking concept.

The maps came about by a process of evolution, he says: "A few years earlier I was creating sculptures of urban infrastructure, networks of lines formed of the cut away road, rivers, canals, railways subway lines, etc. During the process of creating these, an imagination of the history of the city I would be working on would form. Later I reversed the form of these sculptures, creating sculpture from the spaces between the lines, the interior, inhabited spaces. Once using paper it became possible to introduce a variety of media on to the surface of the sculptures, enabling the idea of the city to grow exponentially."

What challenges does the work present? "Becoming quick enough and skilled enough in order to take on a work with more than 1000 handmade pieces and actually finish it" and "the assimilation and dissection of large amounts of material in order to keep the work sharply focused."

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