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Brooklyn-based artist Clement Valla scours Google Earth looking for anomalies. They aren’t visible right away, but when the viewpoint is in just the right position, the program shows warped linear figures such as roads and bridges as if they’re melting over the landscape. But they are not glitches or errors in the algorithm, but are the absolute logical result of the system. This is why Valla is so fascinated with them.

3D images like those in Google Earth are generated through a process called texture mapping, where the flat satellite image of the earth is applied over the 3D terrain, like a label over a can or a bottle of soda. Most of the time this goes unnoticed, even natural, but sometimes the two spaces are so different, that things look strange, vertiginous, or plain wrong.

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© Amusing Planet, 2014.



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