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Articles | Volume 1
15 Jul 2019
 | 15 Jul 2019

When marks become graphics. Rediscovering a forgotten Bertin’s fork?

Gilles Rouffineau

Keywords: Jacques Bertin, Graphics, Education, Logarithmic matrix, Visualisations

Abstract. Adaptations of Semiology of Graphics: Diagrams, Networks, Maps (Bertin, 1967), and more broadly Jacques Bertin’s graphics research published since the mid-sixties, are manifold. So is the wide range of fields chosen to present various visual transformations and deep interpretations proposed to explain his actual graphical methods. From agriculture to demography, or european electric industry to animal behaviour responding to the light (pill bugs…), anything that can be quantified, compared and classified could fit in some graphic treatment for a better understanding. In this respect, graphics is able to go deeper and faster than any other analysis.

I would like to present a forgotten, unusual, rather unfinished, attempt to make use of graphics in a french design graduate school pedagogy during the eighties. Obviously, the impact of Bertin's research is huge in the cartography and social or historical sciences, but it seems seldom in the more casual educational domain, and more particularly in graphic design training course. Is it a paradox?

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