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Eleven Hand-Drawn Maps of London Featured in New Display at the Museum of London
The nature of New Cross. © Harriet McDougall.
LONDON.- A display of 11 hand-drawn maps of London goes on show at the Museum of London from the 21 April 2011. The exhibition looks at mapping London, not as a factual or geographical tool but based on the individual experiences, perceptions and imaginations of Londoners. The maps have all been created by members of the public and are personal projections of their relationships with the capital’s landscape.

In partnership with Londonist.com, readers were encouraged to submit hand-drawn maps, focussing on their own experiences and connections with certain areas of London. As well as being visually compelling, each map has an interesting story to tell.

The narratives range from an amusing portrayal of London’s public toilets and an illustration of Brixton, under the guise of a tree, to the superimposition of the nineteenth-century Kensington Hippodrome on to present day Ladbroke Grove.

The 11 maps on display include:

• The tree of Brixton pubs and cafés, by Liam Roberts
• Map of London, by Anika Mottershaw
• Lavender Mayfair map, by Alexander 6
• Selected loos of London, by Paula Simoes
• Hoxton Square, by Martin Usborne
• Subjective mapping - Hackney, by Alexander Schmidt
• Broadway Market, by Alexander Schmidt
• London, 4 months off the boat, by Flory Leow
• Kensington Hippodrome in contemporary Ladbroke Grove, by Kathleen McIlvenna
• London firsts, by Julia Forte
• The nature of New Cross, by Harriet McDougall

Harriet McDougall, New Cross resident and former country bumpkin, said: “I would like my map to help people see beyond the grey scruffiness of New Cross to the charm and warmth beneath it. Places are too often dismissed at face value, but if you get under its skin to some of its secrets, stories and history it's easy to find the good.”

Matt Brown, Editor of Londonist.com, said: "The idea was really an antidote to the rise of digital mapping. In this age of GPS, mobile phone apps and data-driven map-making, I thought it would be interesting to go back to basics and see what everyday Londoners could do with a pen, some paper and a bit of imagination. The result is an absorbing collection of highly subjective but uniquely illuminating representations of the city."

Pat Hardy, Museum of London Curator of Paintings, Prints and Drawings, said: “Maps have fascinated and absorbed people for centuries. These maps created by Londoners present a range of local and personal information and are a contemporary, often quirky take, on the traditional mapmaking displayed in the galleries here.”

The display at the Museum of London is free and runs from 21 April – 11 September 2011.





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