ON LAND, OVER WATER: The Thousand Places of the Boyle Family’s World Series


It goes without saying that architects have been quite influenced by the work of artists and sculptors. Recently, I saw a few images of the work of the Boyle Family. Born in Glasgow and Edinburgh, Mark Boyle and Joan Hills and their two children Sebastian and Georgia, along with friends and collaborators such as Jimi Hendrix, created art that refused to exclude any topic. While they have been true to that intention, they are best known for their  land-art project World Series.

Beginning at a party in August 1968, Mark Boyle asked blindfolded guests to throw darts at a world map. With over 1000 hits, these dart strikes became the subject of a life-long journey to document and visit all these places. In order to hone in on the ultimate goal of exploring a 6’x6′ swatch of earth, the Boyle Family would keep shooting darts at increasingly larger scale maps until the finally reached the desired resolution.

The resultant earth pixels take on the form of casts, videos, photographs, and literal excavations. From the scale of the electron microscope, to rule based maps, to experiential recreations of the ocean’s surface are collected and exhibited in one space—a hyper detailed and incredibly abstracted understanding of a single spot on earth.

Images from: http://www.tate.org.uk/context-comment/video/tateshots-edinburgh-boyle-family



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