Infinite Spaces: Shared Terrain

Carmina Sanchez-del-Valle


“The space of lived experience has been reduced to a codified system of signification, and with the increasing emphasis on visual perception there has been a corresponding reduction in other forms of sensory perception.” -- Henri Lefebvre

This session encourages both attentiveness to the environment, and increased awareness of multiple ways to experience it. A short introduction to the project will be given on the first day, and a summary on the last. A large printed map covering a one-mile radius area, using the field station as the center, will be provided. In an urban setting a mile corresponds to a twenty-minute walk. Participants will be asked to draw, doodle, and write on the map defining the spaces and places they visited during their stay. Locations which can be seen on the horizon, and they would like to reach, can be marked on the map. The goal is to coalesce into one map different paths, perspectives, and levels of engagement with the earth.

Space is a situated sense of enclosure. This feeling is strongest when entering or leaving an area. Place is a location whose uniqueness allows us to differentiate it from its surroundings, and from other places in other locations. We can return to it, because we do recognize it. Both space and place are multi-sensorial. Space is a condition of place.

The collaborative mapping effort requires challenging the representational conventions developed for the built environment. In the end we recognize we are always in the map of our own making.