Sunday 31 March 2019

polar azimuthal projection

Via Strange Company, we are introduced to the magnificent, late sixteenth century chart of the known world, Urbano Monte’s Planisphere.
Splitting from the traditional representation of the globe made the industry-standard by Flemish mapmaker Gerardus Mercator in the preceding century, which portrayed the constant bearings of sailing vessels (curved rhumb lines) as straight paths, Monte deconstructed the round Earth as sixty separate surfaces that could be reassembled to study the entire atlas comprehensively. The resulting masterwork is full of tiny details and illustrations but is also testament to Monte’s geographic understanding on a continent scale, surpassing his peers by getting the Mediterranean and Africa more to scale than other depictions and not making California an island. More to explore at the links above.