Mapping it out

I have a map fetish.  For this reason (and my superb navigational skills---thanks for that gene, Dad), I will never ever ever own a G.P.S.  I am categorically opposed to those little Garmin goodies which tell you to turn here and exit there.  
I love getting my hands on a map, awkwardly unfolding its pages and figuring out where to go.  Plotting a route, veering off course, and seeing the grand design of a city is supremely pleasurable for me.  
Maps also provide an inherent visual delight.  Have you ever noticed the color palette of a map or the way streets interlace into patterns?  As an art historian, I treat maps like tidbits of visual culture, like artworks worthy of formal analysis. 
As you might guess, my favorites maps are of my beloved Paris.  I adore the way the Seine slices the city in half. I love charting imaginary walking trips from arrondissement to arrondissment.  I admire the linear quality of the streets as they radiate (thanks to Baron Haussmann in the 1850s) from the city's major monuments.

Do you like wandering through a map too?

Images borrowed from Famille, Bozaround, ThePaintedHive, ParisBoutiqueHotel, XoxoLesley.

1 comment:

  1. Maps can be fun, a visual joy and an intellectual feast. They are probably the oldest form of information technology. As such, they have the most information per square inch of any form of printed media. As a history buff, to me informative and illuminating maps are a sine qua non for the best historical narratives.

    Cha Cha Charles


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