Joost Grootens contributes essay to the book ‘Le Système Minard’
Joost Grootens contributes the introductory essay ‘Charles Joseph Minard: Critical Practice’ to the book ‘Le Système Minard’ on the French pioneer in the representation of statistical data in the 19th century.
Essay ‘Charles Joseph Minard: Critical Practice’
The subject of Grooten´s essay is how Minard’s information visualisations hold up when we assess them critically, assuming that in the exchange of information there is a power relation between the producer and user that is reflected and perpetuated in the work?
‘Le Système Minard’ on the French pioneer in the representation of statistical data in the 19th century.
A pioneer in the representation of statistical data, the French civil engineer Charles-Joseph Minard (1781–1870) has made his maps and tables tools for understanding the social and economic upheavals that are transforming Europe and the rest of the world to time of the industrial revolution of the second half of the 19th century. While the remarkable flow map he created to represent Napoleon's campaign in Russia is considered one of the most extraordinary visualizations of data ever produced, his much larger work remains unrecognized.
Minard produced a set of statistical representations whose influence is still noticeable today in the field of graphical and visual representations of data. The Minard System highlights the processes implemented in their invention. The book, which portrays the man and traces his career, reproduces the remarkable drawings from the collection of the National School of Bridges and Roads in Paris where he was a teacher and shows for the first time the entirety of his achievements.