These maps are very personal. The maps of “Nyland” [Newland] – a made up island I created during my last year of the abusive marriage. It was a way to disassociate myself from my reality – a place to escape to when I couldn’t stand my own life or the helplessness I felt at the time. I tried to create a place of peace and beauty. And a place that I could control and create in any way I wanted. There, I felt powerful and significant. I made up stories about the history of the cities. I created a climate, I created the nature and its assets on the island. I shaped the lakes and smaller islands connected to the big island – like they served as a safe haven in an already safe place. Places where no one could ever get to me and hurt me. I created a mythology around Nyland – the flag, the history of the nation and the symbols associated with it.
One year into creating Nyland, I finally found the strength to leave my abuser and the project disappeared into the mess of the divorce. And then I just forgot about it.
Now, I am thinking about the project as an evidence that I have so many worlds inside me. Places to visit, stories to tell. Characters to explore. This, in combination with my passion for drowning in the complex worlds of TV series, makes me wonder if I would be able to create a made up Universe to share with other people – like J.K. Rowling or Tolkien but with my own mythology. What is hiding deep inside me? I can sense something… somewhere… but I guess only time will tell exactly what is to be found in my inner treasure chest of imagination and creativity.