David Nuttall: Artimaps, Studio 308
Artist David Nuttall became obsessed with drawing maps at the age of five, and he’s since turned that passion into a professional career as well as a creative outlet. Originally from England, he studied cartography to work as a map-maker for the British government before eventually moving to America and working in computer-based Geographic Information Systems. Although he works with real world mapping in his day job, David’s uninhibited creative side comes out when he creates maps for worlds of his own imagining. These completely hand-drawn maps are designed to have all the characteristics of traditional maps, but the cities, roadways, rivers, and all other details are carefully planned by the artist himself. Take a closer look and you will see the names of towns and nations that don’t exist, an island dedicated to the artist’s wife in the shape of a heart, and a full assortment of other hidden flourishes. In recent years David has taken to using the organic rings found in plywood as a topographical guide to “build” imaginary worlds into – the smallest rings representing peaks and the largest representing valleys and bodies of water.
David is a one-of-a-kind creator and his work demands being seen up close and in person. Visit Mr. and Mrs. Nuttall in their incredible Studio 308 at Lowe Mill.
My work includes hand-drawn fictitious maps on wood paper and board, pen and ink drawings, paintings with some sculpture and photography. I am currently working on maps drawn on wood, using the grain of the wood as my contour lines (topology).
My intent is to create map of places that are as realistic as possible, yet are from my imagination. These maps can take months to create and I have to try and be patient enough to draw what I have already seen as finished in my head. The places I create are real enough that I know what they look like and the uses of most of the buildings!
I can normally be found at the studio Friday evenings and Saturdays, but I share the space with my wife Jodi and she is normally there during our open hours.