According to James Corner* mapping is ‘creating and building the world as much a measuring and describing it’ ….maps are both representations of place and necessary abstractions of it (see Borges story ‘on exactitude in science’ ) We’re interesting in exploring this creative potential – can we use a series of transformations, beginning from direct observations of the world, to define new architectural forms and spaces?
we will consider 3 scales - distant, intermediate and intimate:
Mapping 1: the body in the city
Trace and transcribe
We want to locate activities and rooms in the city – anybody with a smartphone will need to download an app: Runkeeper. Ignore the accent and the calorie count, save the maps...we will transcribe them later.
Two examples to look at - Jeremy Wood 'my ghost' maps; and Layla Curtis 'polar wanderings' and 'cab routes'
Mapping 2: the ‘room’
Observe, select and record.
Mapping 3: the body in the room.
Speculate, critique and invent.
We will begin with an exercise in mapping/drawing activities and occupation, considering the intimate scale - the body in space - with a view to creative re-making. Conventional architectural drawing tends to exclude the occupant and consider only the context - this exercise will require you to investigate methods and ideas which might be unfamiliar – film, photography, collage - you’ll need to do some reading, thinking (and experimenting?) to explore how this might work.
* The Agency of Mapping: Speculation, Critique and Invention. Corner, J. In Mappings ed. Cosgrove, D.