Joseph Berkner

This marvelous artwork, available as a poster or shower curtain, wants us to embrace refugees.

Joseph Berkner, a geoinformation-science student in Berlin, is sick of hearing people talking trash about migrants.

“These days there are many discussions about refugees in the media here in Germany,” emails Berkner, who’s 24. “And when I see comments on websites like ‘They don’t belong here’ or ‘Most of them are men or criminals,’ I feel like many of these people have never been in contact with people of other nations (or made bad experiences once and therefore created their own stereotypes for the rest).”

So Berkner dove into an unusual project to convey a difference message: acceptance. Using Inkscape, he started drawing at the bottom right of a navy-blue screen and, an eternity or so later, ended at nearly the same point. What emerged was an incredible map of the world executed in a single line, linking together its cities...

...and islands…

...and even its border and title:

One Line–One Map–One World” is now available in a variety of forms (duvet cover!) for holiday shoppers who want to spread tolerance, or maybe annoy a bigoted uncle. Berkner explains more about its meaning on his website:

This differentiation are supported by maps. In mapping, lines are (mostly) used as borders to divide the space in sections: borders between land and water, borders between different altitudes or borders between nations. As a person who loves to make maps, for the last weeks I was thinking about what I can do to draw a line to CONNECT instead of DIVIDE. So I created a world map consisting of a single line. When watching the map from far away you cannot see the connections. It looks like everything is divided. But if you go closer you can see that everything is one. To realize that we are somehow all one community you need to go close to others.

By keep drawing borders there will be no solution to all those problems we have these days. Let’s try to draw connections…

“One LineOne MapOne World,” $84 for a print, $65 for a shower curtain, and more options at Fine Art America

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. photo: San Diego's Trolley
    Transportation

    Out of Darkness, Light Rail!

    In an era of austere federal funding for urban public transportation, light rail seemed to make sense. Did the little trains of the 1980s pull their own weight?

  2. photo: Developer James Rouse visiting Harborplace in Baltimore's Inner Harbor.
    Life

    What Happened to Baltimore’s Harborplace?

    The pioneering festival marketplace was among the most trendsetting urban attractions of the last 40 years. Now it’s looking for a new place in a changed city.

  3. Design

    Why Amsterdam’s Canal Houses Have Endured for 300 Years

    A different kind of wealth distribution in 17th-century Amsterdam paved the way for its quintessential home design.

  4. Equity

    What ‘Livability’ Looks Like for Black Women

    Livability indexes can obscure the experiences of non-white people. CityLab analyzed the outcomes just for black women, for a different kind of ranking.

  5. Perspective

    An Urbanist Investor’s Table Stakes for Tech Leaders

    A growing number of startups are pitching technologies to “solve” urban problems. So it matters when they can’t even name their own local representatives.

×