Herwig Scherabon, Architecture

The two large prints (150×75cm) are visualizations of income inequality in Los Angeles and Chicago and are currently shortlisted for the Information is Beautiful Awards. They are printed on matte Somerset Velvet paper and mounted on thick wooden boards. The images are abstract diagrams of these cities that show a high resolution matrix of blocks. The height of these blocks corresponds to the income in the respective output area. The intention was to show the city’s income segregation through one striking image that retains the visual footprint of the city’s street grid.

There is an obvious divide between rich and poor in modern cities. According to the Pew Research Center Los Angeles has an income segregation score of 51 which is 16% higher than the national average in the US. Interestingly the income segregation correlates with the ethnic segregation in most cases. It is part of the design idea to inspire the viewer to look for their own neighborhood or other areas that interest them. I want to trigger a train of thought for what the reasons behind inequality might be. I am always fascinated by the patterns and correlations in the urban fabric. The politics behind urban planning tell us a lot about the people who live in these places and the powers who shape them. I think that it is utterly important to try to unveil the inequalities and the segregating mechanism that we got used to live with.

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