Map Collages


             Think these pieces were made from pencil, pen or paint? Think again. Artist Matthew Cusick cuts away pieces on maps, atlases, encyclopedias and school textbooks, to create crazy collages that look like drawings or paintings. "I like to catalog, archive, and arrange information and then dismantle, manipulate, and reconfigure it," he says.

            Cusick flips around road, river and transit lines, piecing them together to form everything from portraits to landscapes. While Cusick sometimes adds paint (like acrylic) to these pieces, by and large, the colors are taken from the maps' topography. Cusick explains how he got started with working with maps:

About nine years ago, frustrated with paint and brushes, I just started experimenting with some maps I had laying around the studio. I found that maps have all the properties of a brushstroke: nuance, density, line, movement, and color. Their palette is deliberate and symbolic, acting as a cognitive mechanism to help us internalize the external. And furthermore, since each map fragment is an index of a specific place and time, I could combine fragments from different maps and construct geographical timelines within my paintings.

            Browse the works of Matthew Cusick on his website.

            Now this is called creativity with maps! Anyone out there with such innovative map creativity?!?

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