Aesthetic Aspects of Early Maps – Inspiration from Notes by Univ. Prof. Karel Kuchař

Journal / Conference: Historické mapy (Bratislava - září 2009)
Authors: Jan D. Bláha
Year: 2009
Category of Publication: Contribution in Conference Proceedings
Pages, web: s. 25-33
Keywords: early maps, art in maps, aesthetics, Karel Kuchař
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Abstract: The first part mentions the traditional, and we can also say never-ending, discussion on cartography and early maps being a form of art (expert specialization, mastery in map production and freedom of creation, evolution of cartographic language, more accurate mapping, evolution of reproductive techniques and technologies in general, J. B. Krygier’s polemic on the dualism of science × art in cartography, establishment of the ICA Working Group called Art and Cartography). It is followed by a summary of aesthetic aspects of (not only) early maps (map format, sheet composition, use of space, shapes of map fields and structure of outlines, form of compositional elements, map contents, cartographic language, thematic cartography methods, use of colour and font in maps, author’s style and handwriting). Finally, several pieces of evidence are offered confirming that “early maps” and “computer map production” are not incompatible. We can find such examples, among others, in Bachelor Theses dealing with artistic techniques used in current cartographic products for the public and with maps of fictitious worlds using similar means of expression as early maps.
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