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This thesis explores the creation of Plantable Maps, which seek to present geographic information in a way that is conscious of its ties to its local environment. I created biodegradable and compostable maps using plant-based materials that visualize the spatial history of "blight" in San Francisco. Blight, originally an ecological term for a fungal disease in plants, was used by mid-century urban planners to justify redevelopment policies with racially unjust consequences. These map sculptures explore the intertwined history of urban land use and natural ecology, and the implications of relating data to its sites of origin. The result is a project that — through material, process and site-specificity — aims to return information to the natural landscape.
DepartmentProgram in Media Arts and Sciences (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology