The XYZ Atlas asks why we feel a sense of belonging to a place by mapping experiences and collecting stories that document our highs and lows.
The XYZ Atlas is an interactive public art project. We create art, maps, and activations that affect community health and well-being, urban planning, and cultural tourism with diverse outreach strategies to reach art lovers and underserved communities of all ages.
As an artist, I create visualizations about ideas. I was trying to understand how to accept all my feelings and experiences, not just the pleasurable ones. I came across Psychologist Robert Plutchik’s chart of emotions, and after I assigned it to a color wheel, I could finally visualize emotional wholeness. Then I started asking how we create attachment to place, starting with where I live, Austin, Texas.
XYZ Atlas: the Hedonic Map of Austin launched in fall, 2013. The XYZ Atlas began with an anonymous survey intended to collect participants’ stories and data. Over three years, more than 45 exhibits, installations and events were produced in Austin at venues such as SXSW, The University of Texas at Austin, the Elisabet Ney Museum, the Thinkery museum, and Austin parks and community events.
XYZ Atlas: the Experience Map of Bryan and College Station runs through fall 2017 with the support of the Mid-America Arts Alliance and the National Endowment for the Arts.
XYZ Atlas: Congress Avenue occurred in spring 2017 with the support of the Downtown Austin Alliance, Southwest Airlines, and the Project for Public Spaces.
We recently launched the "world map" survey. I want to invite you to join this unique opportunity to visualize how we experience belonging.