Karen Rann – The Great Lines Project

Since first hearing of Newcastle born Charles Hutton in 2014, I have been chasing the history of a line.

Contour lines on maps were invented 400 years ago, or perhaps only 250; depending on whether isobaths (the submarine version) count.

I assumed foolishly that there would be a book that pulled together all the strands, including why Charles Hutton is so important to the story. But that book isn’t there. Instead I’ve been amassing leads in the Netherlands, Italy, Britain and France, slowly pulling together the threads.

Now with support from VARC and Arts Council England I am researching, walking the sites of those early maps and making work in response. Initial works in progress will be on show at VARC this spring (details to follow).

If you like maps, walking, art or detective stories you might like to follow the blog: The Great Lines Project



Great Lines
March 2, 2016


The Great Lines
May 24, 2016