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Sunday, 5 September 2010

From Here to There with a detour in Johannesburg

Following in the footsteps of D+Q favourite Katharine Harmon's You Are Here and The Map As Art (the latter of which, incidentally, just came out in PAPERBACK!) comes From Here to There, which is a collection of hand drawn maps.

Kris Harzinski founded the Hand Drawn Map Association to celebrate the "ephemeral documents" we create, and promptly forget about or throw away. The range of maps collected within the book is impressive - between the two covers you will find maps of: ponds, imaginary countries, parts of the human body, famous police chases and so so much more. Each map is introduced by a short paragraph of explanation. The book itself is gorgeous, and the stories that explain the maps are almost poetic in their charm.

Exhibit A:

Unconvinced? Check out their website.

Vaguely related:
Ivan Vladislavic wrote one of my favourite books of all time, The Restless Supermarket, which is tragically out of print or I would be forcing it on every customer who entered the Librairie. But fear not dear reader, because he has a new book! And it is basically a textual map of Johannesburg.

Portrait with Keys is, in the words of Guardian reviewer Jan Morris, a ramble around Johannesburg. It positions itself somewhere in the no-man's land between fiction and non-fiction. Vladislavic writes the sort of semi-fictional prose that makes you simultaneously fall in love with Joburg and feel ill about the racial and class divides that still segregate the city.

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