Claes Tingvall

A Thoughtful Way to Distract Your Day

Detail of illustration by Claes Tingvall (Swedish Road Administration) depicting the amount of space given over to cars in urban areas.

“By depicting roads as chasms and crosswalks as rickety planks spanning them, Tingvall shows just how lopsided the the proportions of a normal urban street corner really are.”

Joseph Stromberg

We are generally averse to articles that tell us what to think or how to feel, but this one is pretty straightforward and, besides, the headline (“This brilliant illustration shows how much public space we’ve surrendered to cars”) tells us what Joseph Stromberg of Vox.com thinks, and, well, is that not the point of artistic criticism?

VoxThen again, what is the criticism? Well-executed basic artistic form about a colored pencil drawing? The patience of maturity enduring what youth could not? It is a curious aesthetic result, with the detail of a well-illustrated children’s book read as the first twitches of a geometrically overdosed acid trip rise in the brain.

On the other hand, within the breadth of what art can communicate, yes, this is pretty simple, and it’s supposed to be.

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Stromberg, Joseph. “This brilliant illustration shows how much public space we’ve surrendered to cars”. Vox. 18 November 2014.