This is the course blog of the hands-on seminar thaught at l’Ecole Spéciale d’Architecture.


What parallels can be drawn between the process of mapping and that of designing?
How do you map… the invisible—feelings, fleeting moments, or emotions?
Why would architects need to map perceptions?
In which ways map-making addresses digital culture?

These are questions we will be investigating during the seminar: MAP—Motorizing Architectural Processes. While projection systems and technologies have increased their accuracy (we think of today’s Geographic Information Systems (GIS), open digital mapping platforms such as “open street map”, and locative media), maps have gained agencies, which challenged their “veracity”. Maps, like the census and the museum, can enable the construction of national identity (O’Gorman Anderson, 1991). Maps include and exclude, prompting author Philippe Vasset to explore the unrepresented spaces of maps, these left blank (Vasset, 2007). (Dis)information visualization, which is what maps essentially do, is about editing information (collecting and choosing), organizing (in a collection) and coding it. Now, maps are also dynamic, “perpetually updated objects” to the point that we “inhabit both the city and its representation” (Desbois, 2011). Maps thus precede territories (Baudrillard, 1983); they exist before that territories materialize. The codes embedded within become the parameters of an imagined or could be space.


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