Southern, Jen and Hamilton, J. (2004) Distance made good: Flow lines. [Show/Exhibition]

A place is both real and imagined, but also symbolic. Global positioning System (GPS) devices tell us where we are on the surface of the earth in terms of latitude, longitude and altitude but they cannot tell us about a cultural sense of place. Hamilton and Southern worked with local people to make a new map of Lancaster and Morecambe, UK, based on the lives of the people living and working there, and of the places. The walkers were invited to make journeys that in some way represent who they are in conjunction with being a landmark for the city they live in (e.g. A participant in Morecambe took us for a walk along the seafront, as for him the seafront represented Morecambe, and it was a route he regularly took when walking his dog). Thirty four walks were recorded using a GPS device, and were represented together in the gallery on two map like screens folded into the space.

Behind the scenes you see the chaotic trails of 34 walks begin to make a co-herent geography, the busy centre of Lancaster, the sprawling sinuous wave of the seafront in Morecambe. Although the back of the screens are expressing a lived and personal experience they are also the most 'map like'. The fronts of the screens, whilst more abstract are also more evocative of an experience of place. The sweeps of matchsticks appearing to flock, to group like isobars, to flow like tides.

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