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Thursday 05/28/15 4:35PM-5:45PM


Great Hall, the Cooper Union
7 E 7th St
New York, NY 10003 Directions

Panel Discussion: Maps for The Invisible City

Part of the Conference Pass

Watch the event on the New Museum’s YouTube Channel.

To make a map is an inherently political act. By documenting that which is unfamiliar and invisible, maps define our universe; they not only document the organization of physical space, but shape its future form. Cartography is almost as ancient as humanity itself, yet it is undergoing unprecedented change. Once drawn and managed by an elite few, maps are increasingly collaborative, open, fluid, and freely accessible. What is cartography’s potential as a form of activism in the twenty-first century? What will the map’s role be in shaping the city of the future? How can it guide us through the Invisible City?

Steve Coast
Founder, OpenStreetMap
Steve Coast is a British entrepreneur. In 2004, he founded the OpenStreetMap (OSM), a community-based world-mapping project dubbed by the Guardian as “the Wikipedia of maps,” thanks to its millions of contributors across the world. OSM has not just created a platform for individuals to map everything from cities to hiking trails, footpaths, and local services, but also slums in Sub-Saharan Africa that previously translated into blank spots on most online maps.

William Rankin
Founder, Radical Cartography
William Rankin is a historian and cartographer. His mapping activity is focused on reimagining everyday urban and territorial geographies as complex landscapes of statistics, law, and history. His maps have appeared in publications such as Perspecta, Harvard Design Magazine, and National Geographic and in exhibitions at Harvard University, Pratt Institute, the Cartographic Biennial in Lausanne, Triennale di Milano, and the Toronto Images Festival. Rankin’s maps traveled for several years with the Independent Curators International’s “Experimental Geographies” exhibition. He teaches at Yale University, where he is Assistant Professor of History of Science.

Laura Kurgan (moderator)
Associate Professor of Architecture, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation
Laura Kurgan is Director of the Spatial Information Design Lab (SIDL) and Associate Professor of Architecture at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. Her work explores problems ranging from digital location technologies, the ethics and politics of mapping, to new structures of participation in design, and the visualization of urban and global data. Her work has appeared at the Venice Architecture Biennial; the Whitney Altria, New York City; Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art; the Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe (ZKM), Germany; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York City.

Categories: Civic Life
Participating Organizations: Laura Kurgan, Steve Coast, William Rankin

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