Maps can speak of the passing of time. Obviously, looking at maps of the same area over a long period of time will show you the physical development of an area. But the style and look of the map, the graphic qualities, the way it has been drawn and designed, the text used, the paper it is printed on, also gives you a sense of time passing. In subtle ways they can speak of technological developments, design and fashion, growth and destruction, and identity.
At exhibitions I’ve often seen people craning their necks and contorting themselves into strange positions to find their street on one of my map pieces. They get so excited when they find it, or when they recognise the area. It instantly gives them a different connection to the piece. Most of us identify with a place somewhere, sometime. They are deeply embedded in our sense of who we are, our individual and collective identities and stories.
Viva la map I say.
(6 maps of inner city Brisbane from 1863 until present)