Mapping Minneapolis' Pain and Joy

by KelsiDayle on Sep. 08th, 2010

In an age of Google Earth, University of Minnesota professor, Rebecca Krinke's, map of Minneapolis still manages to capture the imagination.
Krinke Pain and Joy Map: From UMNews: "Memories of pain permeate this part of the map, from places including the Minneapolis impound lot (upper left), Hennepin County Medical Center (bottom center, next to the Metrodome) and the interstate freeway system, presumably at rush hour. At least the river runs through it."
Krinke Pain and Joy Map: From UMNews: "Memories of pain permeate this part of the map, from places including the Minneapolis impound lot (upper left), Hennepin County Medical Center (bottom center, next to the Metrodome) and the interstate freeway system, presumably at rush hour. At least the river runs through it."Courtesy University of Minnesota

Krinke, an associate professor in landscape architecture, and a team of students, created a simple laser-cut maple vaneer map of the Cities this summer. Then they mounted it on plywood, armed themselves with both a gray and gold colored pencil, and hit the streets. That's where the magic happened and the map transformed into both a public art piece and an informal sociology investigation.

The map traveled to public spaces in both Minneapolis and St. Paul where curious passerbys were

"...invited to use the colored pencil of their choice—gold for joy and gray for pain (or both)—to express their memories of places.

The stories they told as they colored the impound lot nearly gray and entire city blocks gold provided a powerful emotional release. (To read more about the participants memories, read the full article here or check out Krinke's blog, Unseen/Seen: Mapping Joy and Pain.)

The physical map is preparing for it's final curtain call, but Krinke is thinking about putting it online and making it more interactive.

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