Anthropology, Art and Architecture, Author Events, Cartography and Geography, History

Festival of Maps exhibition opens tomorrow

jacket imageTomorrow, November 2, as part of the three month long Festival of Maps, the Field Museum will open the exhibit, Maps: Finding Our Place in the World. On display will be some of the most fascinating cartographic artifacts ever shown. And just in time for opening day, the Press has released a companion volume of the same name edited by exhibit curators James R. Akerman and Robert W. Karrow, Jr. Like the exhibit, the book surveys a huge range of cartographic sources to explore the many ways that maps have changed our lives and helped us understand the environment in which we live. From a review in Discover magazine:

From religious pilgrimages and vacation road trips to depictions of the ocean floor and the magical landscapes of J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth, maps chart both physical and imaginary worlds. As geographer Denis Cosgrove explains, “world’ is a social concept … a flexible term, stretching from physical environment to the world of ideas, microbes, of sin. Arguably, all these worlds can be mapped.” And they are in this compelling and very readable companion volume to the current exhibition at the Field Museum in Chicago.

To find out more about the book, see this special website where you can view a sampling of images organized by theme from just of few of the many fascinating maps in the book.
And if you’re planning a day out tomorrow to go see some of these maps in person, you can check out the Field Museum’s exhibition highlights online at their website which includes ticket sales, a list of special events, and a primer on what you can expect too see if you go.
In addition to the exhibit at the Field Museum many other Chicago institutions including the Newberry Library and the Chicago History Museum are participating in the Festival of Maps over its three month time span, making it one of the most ambitious celebrations of maps ever. For those looking for a more comprehensive rundown of the entire Festival, navigate to the Chicago Tribune’s festival website which includes a guide to the Festival’s various venues, video presentations by the Tribune‘s Patrick Reardon, and even a special blog with reviews and commentary on the Festival’s many exhibits. The Tribune also links to the Festival’s official website where you can find an indispensable map (of course) of the Festival of Maps and other online features.