Cracks in the Pavement resulted in a number of physical, collaborative maps of different areas of East London. Each map is generated by four to five participants who walked along the same route at different times, annotating their thoughts, ideas and observations on a shared A1-sized sheet of paper, that was passed along from one walker to the next.
The first walker determined the route and focus of each map. Each subsequent walker followed the steps of those who went before them (more or less), adding to and expanding upon their companions’ notes, drawings and observations, so the map grew in complexity with each participant. I asked each person to nominate the next walker: someone who is local and is able to do the walk in the next 7-10 days. All participants receive an A1 printed copy of the completed map they contributed to at the end.
Prior to the walk, participants received a zip-locked envelope containing a physical paper map (A1 size) as well as a selection of materials such as stickers, tape, pens, paper etc. Each walker went on the walk individually, marking up and annotating their route, thoughts, discoveries and observations. Sometimes the annotations happened during the walk itself, sometimes afterwards at home. If walkers didn’t want to draw and mark up the map themselves, they sent me photos, notes or audio files and annotated on their behalf.
Walkers returned the map and materials in the zip-locked envelope to me. I did an interim scan of the map, uploaded it to this site, stocked up on materials and delivered the map to the next walker.
My Covid protocol ensured that everyone could take part in this project with minimal risk.
All physical materials were quarantined for a minimum of 72h before I deliver them. I placed them in the zip-locked envelope for the duration of their quarantine. I handled the envelope itself only for the purposes of delivery, and did so wearing single-use plastic gloves and a mask. I delivered the envelope to a pre-arranged outdoor location for collection (for example outside people’s front door).
Once contributors had finished with the map and the materials they placed them back in the zip-locked envelope, noting the date and time, and contacted me to arrange collection. I followed the same safety protocol described above for the collection process.