Mapping and Creativity

I was unable to attend this lecture so I looked for articles and images on mapping and creativity and found an article which was very useful in helping me understand the contents of this lecture. It has opened my mind to the creative possibilities that mapping unusual and unexpected data can bring.

In my web searches this image, by the artist Julie Mehretu, really stood out to me:


Image from Making Maps

 “Asking what it means to be an American artist in Germany during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars of the Bush years, Mehretu’s canvases meditate on the idea of the modern ruin [using] shapes drawn from architectural plans, city plans, and aerial imagery.”  (from Making Maps)

The lecture covered all kinds of inspirational techniques and images:

  • the mapping of hand movements
  • the mapping of dance
  • the mapping of pedestrians’ trajectories
  • mapping art gallery visitors’ movements around the Louvre
  • sensory maps

Part of the lecture that really caught my attention was Nigel Coates’s Mixtacity installation for the Tate Modern in 2007:


Image from Nigel Coates

“Mixtacity[‘s] method is freeform and collaged… rapid prototyped models … are layered together with everyday objects masquerading as roads and buildings.” (From Nigel Coates) The use of ready made objects very much appeals to me. I love the challenge of using what’s available to make something, and also that something is being made out of things that would otherwise be thrown away.  There’s plenty of existing stuff in the world to make things from!


Canadian Architect. (2012). Creative Mapping. Retrieved from

Making Maps. (2011). Making Maps: DIY Cartography. Retrieved from

Nigel Coates. (2014). Mixtacity. Retrieved from

Sensory Maps. (2014). Sensory Maps. Retrieved from

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