Daum.net aerial view of Ttueksom station in Seoul
Dymaxion Map, Buckminster Fuller, Courtesy wikimedia commons
Now, more than ever, we have access to a myriad of options for viewing the city. Cartography, or the craft of map-making has for centuries been a search for representing the earths surface and its composition in two dimensional form. Maps as two dimensional representations have given way to digitized volumes of aerial shots and three dimensionally charted land/ building forms, capturing nearly every corner of our urban (and rural) environments. It seems impossible that the two dimensional map, be it analogue or digital, will disappear anytime soon. The ability to view the city or any arrangement on the earths surface from various vantage points in nearly live time, has been augmented with combined technologies for unprecedented realism in viewing the composition of the earths surface from above.
By comparison, the Dymaxion map, patented by Buckminster Fuller in 1946, was a projection of a world map onto the surface of a polyhedron. The ensuing pattern was then unfolded using various methods and flattened to form a two-dimensional map which, in the end retained much of the proportional integrity of the globe map. While it may seem easy to dismiss the accuracy of the Dymaxion map at first glance, when in fact it is the deception of our minds eye that challenges relationships of the continents we have come to recognize in a northerly upward orientation, form and arrangement. The polyhedron superimposed grid establishing accurate break points, while maintaining continental precision.
So too, is the current aerial deceptive in its momentary, time captured snapshot of the city. Here today, and as is the case in Seoul, altered city tomorrow. Perhaps in the near future technology will have bridged the gap between transforming cities/ land forms and the digitized lenses through which we view them.