Friday, August 10, 2012

More about those cards.....

I just took the top nine cards off my "Future Predictor" deck and scanned them so I could give you a better idea of what they tell me. Starting from the upper left they are:

6 Hearts: I move down six panels in my current stack, pull that sheet, make two color copies, and archive the original. One copy gets signed and offered for sale on eBay. The other copy becomes the next generation of that panel and gets revised according to basic rules which I will not go into here. Each panel has a set of cross-hairs from which all execution and revision emanates. Blank areas get painted, and already painted areas get a layer of collage. When the sheet is entirely collaged the bud of a new town appears at the cross-hairs.

Q Hearts: Move 12 panels and proceed as above. When the card is red the painting or collageing is done counter-clockwise. Black cards indicate a clockwise direction. The card also has the command "1/16" telling me to make a new 1/16 scale composed sheet  (256 panels on one 8 by 10 inch page).

5 Hearts: The command is to scan. I am continually in the process of scanning the 2600 plus panels in order to make 1/4 and 1/16 composition sheets and to give me a sense of where I am in the project.

Black King: tells me to build a new defense wall. So, that sheet will have the bud of a new Void Defense.

9 Diamonds: another "scan" command. There are several in the deck.

8 Diamonds: reads "New island if all water OR new Void Defense Wall." This gives me an alternative. Sometimes I draw a card which doesn't make sense given the panel on which I am working. I am obliged to execute the command as well as I can but also then have given myself permission to change the command on the card for the next time it comes up. I keep a list of such new commands and take the next one on the list.

7 Diamonds: "Count sheets." This is another never-ending process. Every time I archive a sheet or create a new panel I try to remember to change the count on the header sheet for that pile. Sometimes I forget. So, I have found it necessary to count manually the piles. This command obliges me to count at least one pile.

Joker: Move 15 panels, work clockwise, copy a city "master" onto label paper. Most of the collage work is done by cutting out label paper. There are stacks of various colored collage materials and folders of roads and cities. There are masters of each type, and, in this case, I will copy the top master in its stack and then return it to the bottom.

7 Diamonds: "Copy this sheet for collage." The seventh panel down the stack will be copied onto label paper for collage use. This is an example of the Map regenerating itself.

Everyone thoroughly confused? I'd be happy to answer specific questions.


  1. Most wonderful. Thanks.
    A few questions for you...

    Is the deck all 53 cards or more/less?
    Does the deck ever get shuffled or randomized? How?
    What are your prime sources for collage material and how is it chosen or sorted?

    Again, I love your work and your project.

    1. Thanks once more, Sean!

      There are more than 53 cards in this deck. I started with the basic deck, but there is a command that says "Add a new card and shuffle the deck." I also have added any cards that I have found lying in the street (mostly in NYC). Collage materials include photos I have taken, letters from my own files, and copies made from earlier Map panels.

  2. hi Jerry, i have a question too, how do your spred sheets work? how do you know how many people you have and the size of the area needed for each? also,do you add a page a day?

    1. I count the green city rectangles as 100 people each, the red ones as 300, and the grey, cross-hatched ones as 500. Each individual house counts as 3 people. Every time I add rectangles or houses I make a note of it and then, eventually, when the right card comes up, add those figures to my official population charts on the spreadsheet.

      I work on the Map every day (when I am with it), but I don't necessarily add new sheets. They get added when either a first-generation sheet comes up in the draw or when I draw a card that says "New guest or seed sheet".

    2. A "new guest sheet" is one provided by an artist friend. I invite other people to contribute to this project. They send me a piece of their work, and I copy it and use that as a new panel and as a source for new collage material. So far about 12 people have participated.

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  4. Hi Jerry- got your prints up, very pleased.

    1. I'm glad you're happy, Keith! And I hope that you will continue to add to your collection!

    2. PS...just looked at the framed prints. They look great!

  5. Hi Jerry, how does working clockwise or counter-clockwise affect to panel?