Marco Pires

Portuguese artist Marco Pires has some really great work in his portfolio. From his statement:

The concept of “white lies” was first associated to the study of cartography by Mark Monmonier, a geographer who adopts a critical stance regarding the evolution of maps, being somewhat sceptical of the manipulation exerted by some of these models of reality. According to Monmonier, a map constructs a representation that is based on deliberate distortions, doing away with exactitude and truth in an effort to better depict the essential.

According to this notion, the map undertakes a spatial abstraction, developing a language that allows it to communicate and analyse data. From that basis emerge those elements called cartograms, which combine the topographic survey of a particular area with information concerning the distribution, frequency or intensity of certain phenomena. “A cartogram is a purposely-distorted thematic map that emphasizes the distribution of a variable by changing the area (or lengths) of objects on the map”, according to James A. Dougenik (1985).

My homonymous series develops itself in accordance with the cartograms’ form of construction. In an attempt to recontextualise documents such as ancient contour maps, which are themselves outdated information, I fragmented their spatial structures through a series of discontinuities, deletions and subtractions. This intervention conceals certain areas and consequently reveals others, especially those containing the document’s captions, whose original referents are replaced by the formless, discontinuous monochrome mass which now covers each map.

The black sketchbooks series consists of small pages taken from moleskine notebooks, on which fragments of maps are printed and then worked on with various materials, from writing implements to oil stains, re-drawing each document in a game of tensions and erasures, an exercise of displaced intentions which separated themselves from reality. Project, hesitation, error, direction and drift all combine into an autonomous language that competes with the topology on the maps from which it emerges, pointing towards a referential and spatial repositioning. The pages are then photographed and large-format prints are made.

via HBT

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2 thoughts on “Marco Pires

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