Queer Edmonton

  • Sumo

The main material for this digital map derives from local writer/activist Darrin Hagen’s The Edmonton Queen: Not a Riverboat Story, his annual queer Edmonton bus tour, and his queer history of Edmonton (in progress). The project will geolocate Edmonton’s queer history in three ways: first, a simple Google map marks points of significance to the queer community since 1975. This map will be used during the Queer History Bus Tour offered every June during Edmonton Pride. Because this pipeline builds on history “from below,” it continues to expand: each year the QHBT turns up new points of significance and new oral histories. For this reason, an accessible, lightweight Google map is the best initial interface.

In its second phase, this map will be translated to a richer Google Earth installation (and corresponding downloadable KML file). In this phase we will build depth into each site with written narratives, audio and/or video files, and archival photographs.

The third phase of this pipeline will geolocate this material using QR (Quick Recognition) codes. Starting with sites that have the richest history, we will mark these locations with smartphone-readable QR codes that will connect to archival, narrative, and audio information about the site.

Method: Translate existing points of interest from Darrin Hagen’s Queer History Bus Tour into a Google Map (spring 2011). See map here. Conduct archival and field research to augment the sites with photos, narratives, and multimedia objects.  Build an interface to this rich data, first using Google Earth and then a locative platform using QR technology.

Scope: Medium-sized, multi-phased, open-ended project.

Platform: Google Maps, Google Earth, LayAr (or another geolocating program).

Author: Heather Zwicker, Maureen Engel, Darrin Hagen