Ethnographers have always been interested in how spatial practices articulate cultural forms, and vice versa. Social geographers have also been concerned to explore mental maps and how these shape or reflect the way different groups navigate and make sense of their environment. However, despite their potential convergence around notions of place intelligence and the living map, there has been little dialogue between these disciplines. Our speakers will draw on their own research to discuss the points of intersection – and tension – between these different perspectives.
Venue: Room 101, Development and Planning Unit UCL, 34 Tavistock Square, London WC1
Chair: Phil Cohen
Christos Varvantakis, Research Fellow at the University of Sussex
Jina Lee, PhD candidate at the University of the Arts London
Katherine Stansfeld, PhD candidate at Royal Holloway, University of London
Juliet Davis, Senior Lecturer at Cardiff University
Sevasti-Melissa Nolas, Senior Lecture at the University of Sussex
Christos Varvantakis, Research Fellow at the University of Sussex, and Sevasti-Melissa Nolas, Senior Lecturer at the University of Sussex, will discuss how children map their neighbourhoods and things that matter to them. Drawing on research conducted in London and Athens, Varvantakis and Nolas will explore how, in the hands of children, maps become more than a representational framework, instead revealing children’s desires and critiques of their lives beyond the domestic or private sphere.
Jina Lee, PhD candidate at the University of the Arts London, will describe how her practice-based research as an artist-cartographer re-examines the role of drawing in map-making, highlighting as it does the process and agency involved in creating maps. Lee will draw on her work with the Joseonjok people in New Malden, London, to explore contemporary drawing practices.
Katherine Stansfeld, PhD candidate at Royal Holloway, University of London, will investigate the potential of visual ethnography and cartographic practice to explore and re-imagine the super-diverse city. Drawing on her research in Finsbury Park, north-east London, Stansfeld will explain how mapping has the potential to express the multiplicity of meaning that exists and is created in Finsbury Park and the wider super-diverse city.
Juliet Davis, senior lecturer in architecture at Cardiff University, will reflect on the redevelopment of the 2012 Olympic Games site in East London, portrayed in planning documents as an industrial wasteland. Drawing on historical, cartographic and photographic research, Davis will offer an alternative account of the site as an historical, lived, working landscape, and will go on to reveal some of the legacies of redevelopment for the industrial users who were dispersed to make way for the Games.