The practice variously called diagram art, radical cartography, and counter-mapping refers to a diverse range of works that artfully subvert the typical coordinates and protocols of traditional map-making. Imagine, for example, attempts to chart “cities of memories,” “imagined landscapes” and “conceptual countries.” Consider an interactive digital map that instantly transposes the effects of war in Baghdad onto San Francisco or one that fixes the location of every surveillance camera in Manhattan. Envision a room-sized global map made of junk computer parts or a map composed exclusively in braille. This presentation will briefly trace the history of contemporary counter-mapping practices to early 20th– and mid-century avant-garde collage, mixed-media, intermedia, and video art. We will then discuss the transformative role of new media in examining questions of community, boundary, space, and memory.
Stephen Voyce is Assistant Professor of English and a member of the Digital Studio for the Public Arts & Humanities at the University of Iowa. He is the author of Poetic Community: Avant-Garde Activism and Cold-War Culture (University of Toronto Press, 2013), the editor of a book of variations: love – zygal – art facts (Coach House Books, 2013) and the Director of the Fluxus Digital Collection. His work also appears in journals such as Modernism/modernity, Criticism: A Quarterly Journal for Literature and the Arts, Postmodern Culture, and Open Letter. Voyce’s primary teaching and research interests include poetry, art, and media studies. He is currently writing a book titled “Open Source Culture: Literature, Appropriation, and the Commons.”
Q&A from the event