a legend

Making a map, reconstructing a map, playing with the idea of a map…this is what I’m doing. A city, a living organism, the bigger picture…this is what I’m thinking. Liking all the crazy detail coming forward. It’s new work for an upcoming exhibition at downtown’s Regular GalleryPhoenix New Times Amy Silverman and Claire Lawton invited me, and 9 other artists, to create a Map of Phoenix. This weekend I’m setting up the map’s Legend. It’s occurs to me very late last night, I probably should have done this first.

Legend, I’ve learned, comes from the Latin, legenda, “things to be read.” Maps inform by using symbols.  A map’s legend tells you what the symbols mean.  In the case of my map there are the usual practical map symbols…city street, interstate, park…and then on top of that is alteration and abstraction, implying something else. I not only want to layout Phoenix, I want to point to a larger idea.  If I set the legend up right, there will be no need for an artist statement. It will not only lay out what I’ve done, but why.

This posting is visual help to me, really…as this is work in progress. I think I don’t need text in the legend, but my husband says I do…

City of Phoenix (a living organism)

A Cell (a living organism)

Above, the start of the Legend

Cell Membrane – City Wall
Golgi Apparatus – Post Office
Lysosomes – Waste Disposal and Recycling

Mitochondria – Energy Plant
Nucleolus – Mayor
Nucleus – City Hall

Nuclear Membrane – City Hall fence and security
Ribosomes on Endoplasmic Reticulum – Highways and Roads

Cytoplasm –  Lawns and Parks


Bigger picture.

Organ (kidney) – State

United States – Body System (digestive system)

Planet – I am Here  You Are Here

To be continued…

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