Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Loping Toward a Psychogeography

I've never been to Manchester, but were I there this weekend, I'd check out the Manchester Mental Mapping Workshop run by Davide Fasic of the Nottingham Psychogeographical Unit. It's part of the Territories Reimagined: International Perspectives festival, and it takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, June 21, at Urbis, Cathedral Gardens, Manchester M4 3BG.

Come and draw your mental map of Manchester. Maybe you won't remember where things are, but know how to get there. You've got a mental picture of the place, your personal map of the city. Nothing compared to the O&S: no grids, no proportions, no miles to the inch. Mental maps are a fluid collection of areas, paths and landmarks; gaps and blurs abound. Buildings and streets are shrouded in emotions, the city changes according to the observer and the sum of all observations is its aura.

Shades of Will Self's recent book, the event also reminded me of a project I learned about at NYU ITP's spring show: World Mappings.

What do the places you love and remember look like inside your head? When I dream of the town in which I was born, sometimes there are entire neighborhoods that don't actually exist.

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