Historic stratigraphic illustrations depict the earth beneath our feet in captivating hand-drawn diagrams. Each drawing tells a unique geologic story, exquisitely rendered in colours from pastel palettes to brilliant bolds that show evolving scientific graphic conventions over time.
Created by federal and state geologists over the course of one hundred years, the maps reveal sedimentary rock layers that present an unexpected view of our treasured public lands, making this collection an important record of natural resources, as well as a beautiful display of map design. The fascinating history of the science behind the drawings is explored by sedimentary geologist Jody Bourgeois, a professor emeritus at the University of Washington's College of the Environment and a fellow of the Geological Society of America.
David Kassel, the founder of ILevel, an art installation firm in New York City, has been collecting stratigraphic drawings for some forty years. While an art student at the State University of New York, in 1977, he came across two small geological cross-section diagrams at an old bookshop in Nyack, New York. Though unfamiliar with their origins, he immediately responded to the lines and colours of these scientific documents and bought them for ten cents each. Today, he owns two hundred geological illustrations, including cross-sections, isometric drawings, and mining maps.