Until you get lost in a city, you really do not know its true nature. And possibly your own.
Only at the moment of realization that you really have lost your way, your bearings, your inner compass, however temporarily, do you get a genuine sense of a place and your place in it. What are these buildings, who are these people, what is that smell, why is that horn honking, is there a bathroom nearby, do I have any money, what do I do? Perhaps even “who am I?”. No, you’re too confident and self assured for that.
MOMO “Tag Manhattan” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
We’ve trekked through New York City thousands of miles by now, worn out many shoes, taken countless wrong turns, and been lost numerous times. It’s part of the adventure really. Especially in the 80s when it was all new to us; cacophonic and crazy and perplexing, unnerving, and seemingly neverending. Now, even with GPS on the phone it is completely possible to get lost. And if you are not lost, you know it is your responsibility to keep your eyes open for someone who is. It’ll happen.
This week we’re excited for London folks who get to look at a map, fifty of them actually. Curated by Rafael Schacter and his collaborative arts organization named A(by)P, Mapping the City is an ingenious little bit of inspiration and conceptualizing of our sense of place.
Augustine Kofie “Overcast Angeles” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Who are these maps created by? Street Artists of course, as well as others from the graffiti art scene.
And these wildcats have taken many liberties with the assignment of “please make a map”. So many in fact that some of these maps would get you lost even further if you were to consult them. But there is plenty to be learned from them nonetheless. These maps may provide valuable insights into the highways and byways of some of these artist’s brains, now that you think of it, you beguiling detective.
The inaugural exhibition opens the New Wing of Somerset House – a wing that has been closed to the public for a century and a half, or roughly the time you have to wait for a cable repair person to come to your apartment. Rafael and his team are busy installing maps right now for the January 22nd opening, and we will have great “install” images and an interview with him next week for you to enjoy. But for right now, have a look at these examples of cartographic excellence from an international array of established and emerging artists for Mapping the City.
(full list of artists at the end of this posting)
CHU “Buenos Aires” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Will Sweeney “Cabott Square” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Brad Downey. Face (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Caleb Neelon “Pickerville” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Shepard Fairey “Berlin Tower” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Jurne “Covalence” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Mike Ballard “The Ultra Poet” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Goldpeg “London is Burning” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Cleon Peterson “The Return” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
Aryz “Map” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
OX “Paris” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)
|108 (Italy)||Aryz (Spain)|
|Augustine Kofie (USA)||Boris Tellegen (The Netherlands)|
|Caleb Neelon (USA)||Cali Thornhill Dewitt (USA)|
|Chu (Argentina)||Cleon Peterson (USA)|
|Daniel K. Sparkes (UK)||Egs (Finland)|
|Ekta [Daniel Götesson] (Sweden)||Eltono (France)|
|Erosie (The Netherlands)||Filippo Minelli (Italy)|
|Gold Peg (UK)||Graphic Surgery (The Netherlands)|
|Herbert Baglione (Brazil)||Honet (France)|
|Horfee (France)||HuskMitNavn (Denmark)|
|Ian Strange [Kid Zoom] (Australia)||Interesni Kazki (Ukraine)|
|Isauro Huizar (Mexico)||Isaac Tin Wei Lin (USA)|
|James Jarvis (UK)||Jurne (USA)|
|Ken Sortais [Cony] (France)||Les Frères Ripoulain (France)|
|Lucas Cantu (Mexico)||Lush (Australia)|
|Malarko (UK)||Martin Tibabuzo (Argentina)|
|Mike Ballard (UK)||MOMO (USA)|
|Nano4814 (Spain)||Nug (Sweden)|
|OX (France)||Pablo Limon (Spain)|
|Petro (UK)||Remed (France)|
|Remio (USA)||Roids (UK)|
|Ron English (USA)||Russell Maurice (UK|
|Shantell Martin (UK)||Shepard Fairey (USA)|
|Sixe Paredes (Spain)||Susumu Mukai (Japan)|
|Swoon (USA)||Tim Head (UK)|
|Vova Vorotniov (Ukraine)||Will Sweeney (UK)|
Contemporary cartographic art by international street and graffiti artists to be the first exhibition in Somerset House’s recently opened New Wing