Map, 2006–11Public Installation
The project Map is a public space installation that investigates the red map marker from the location-based search engine Google Maps, which advertises: “Find local businesses, view maps and get driving directions in Google Maps.” With a small graphic icon, Google marks search results in the map interface. The design of this virtual map pin seems to be derived from a physical map pushpin. On the one hand, the marker and the information bubble that appears next to it cast a shadow on the digital map as if they were physical objects. When the map is switched to satellite mode, the marker and bubble seem to become part of the city. On the other hand, the pin is a simple twenty-pixel graphic icon, which always remains the same size on the computer screen. The size of the life-size red marker in physical space corresponds to the size of a marker in the Web interface in maximal zoom factor of the map. Transferred to physical space, the map marker calls into question the relation of digital information space to public city space in everyday life. Placed in proximity to the Kumu Art Museum and visible at a distance from main traffic routes into the Tallinn city center, the public installation makes viewers aware of the increasing overlapping of virtual and physical space. Map reflects how our perception of the city is more and more influenced by geo-location services.
Aram Bartholl, Map, 2006–2011, Public Installation | © Aram Bartholl