Map Works: Artist uses recycled maps to create striking ocean scenes

There's something truly beautiful about old maps. Perhaps it's the connection they hold between the world we now know and the world our ancestors knew. A documentary of the changing landscapes, maps are historical documents of the most beautiful form.

Artist Matthew Cusick agrees. Using old maps as a medium, he takes an inventive approach to fusing fine art painting with collage to create these stunning geographical works. Pieces of world maps blend seamlessly to depict raging seas and sideways rain, alongside faultless portraits of both humans and animals.

The colours employed by map makers to differentiate between land and sea add a sense of depth and texture, which almost makes the images appear three-dimensional.

Cusick explains: "Maps have all the properties of a brushstroke: nuance, density, line, movement, and colour. Their palette is deliberate and symbolic, acting as a cognitive mechanism to help us internalise the external.”

Cusick's unique style has certainly not gone unnoticed in the art world. His work has been exhibited across America – from Dallas to New York. He's also been featured in numerous books and has been nominated for several awards. To see more of his work, visit his website.


Get the best of Creative Boom delivered to your inbox weekly