Tuesday, June 8, 2004

Maps! You have taught me the fear of becoming lost

Jane England in ROAM - a Reader on the Aesthetics of Mobility

To roam is to be mobile - able to move freely from one place or position in the environment to another. The essential companion to mobility is orientation, the knowledge of distance and direction in relation to your surroundings, together with the ability to keep track of spatial relationships as they change while you move about. Maps provide the orientation that accompanies mobility so that you can reach where you want to go, or know exactly where it is that you have ended up: "You have taught me the fear of becoming lost... In strange cities I memorise streets and always know exactly where I am. Amid scenes of splendour, I review the route back to the hotel."

There it is again. That tension between security and insecurity...

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