With the help of a map, one gets orientation and can define its own position within its surrounding and (urban) landscape. Before digitalization, schools used big maps (being an printed object) to show kids in an overall view where they are living within the world and what the neighbors are (beside also forming a nationalistic identity). So this ist the first time a kid gets a picture of the world, everybody is talking about, and starts differentiating between landscape, urban space and nature space. So I used these old school maps to make my own new pictures and see what they show us today, or what kind of pictures they can give us today. This screenshot shows my own playground, with different pictures, still open in which directions it goes.
To get another view on the maps and what they show, i went outside and photographed them again, in reality, the ‘real context’. I had different maps in different locations. The maps have names like “Silent Switzerland” or “The States of the World”.
I have again different pictures with different settings on my playground. Looking at these pictures, a website comes to my mind, (now we are in the digital age, where we perceive maps only on screens), https://thetruesize.com, which tries to shows the distortion of the old mercator map (used in the old school maps) and show the real size of countries. What is being criticized is that the mercator map exaggerates the size of countries nearer the poles, while downplaying the size of those near the equator, and as a result, the way we think about the world.
And this reminds me again of how i encountered the world in school with these old school maps and that maybe i got a wrong picture in the first place.