There’s nothing particularly creepy about Clement Valla’s 3D Maps Minus 3D: literally, it’s the images used by “one of the major online satellite 3D-maps” (Google?), with all of the 3D modeling removed. Google’s 3D maps aren’t unsettling on their own, and this is just one part of how the sausage gets made.
But–and I’m not claiming to know Valla’s intent here–seeing all these images removed from their context is a reminder of just how many of these images are out there. And there’s something a little trypophobia-triggering about the swarms of gray holes created by missing pixels.
The artist explains, partially:
The mapping apparatus that gives us access to the view-from-above perspective also contains within it a multi-perspective view from within. This is the view we see in the texture maps. These texture maps are flattened, fragmented and exploded photographs. There are no singular vanishing points, no ground or horizon in these maps, and thus no hierarchies of information. Rooftops, facades, roads, and buildings are all collapsed onto the same plane. They collapse multiple points of view and times into a single picture plane.