There have been many beautiful maps of the world—and most are pretty inaccurate.
Artist Hajime Narukawa recently won a Good Design Award for his design of a proportionally accurate—and foldable—world map.
And according to Spoon & Tamago, this project wasn't a one-off for Narukawa: The artist created a company called AuthaGraph fueled by a distaste for geographer Gerardus Mercator's popular map design (which heavily distorts Greenland and Antarctica) and the goal of creating more accurate depictions of the world. This particular map goes by the same name and describes a process for projecting proportional landmasses on paper.
The project outline on the Good Design Award website sheds more light on the award-winning construction:
“This original mapping method can transfer a spherical surface to a rectangular surface such as a map of the world while maintaining correctly proportions in areas. AuthaGraph faithfully represents all oceans, continents including the neglected Antarctica. These fit within a rectangular frame with no interruptions. The map can be tessellated without visible seams. Thus the AuthaGraphic world map provides an advanced precise perspective of our planet. The map need a further step to increase a number of subdivision for improving its accuracy to be officially called an area-equal map.”
The best part? You can actually buy one the AuthaGraph map poster or globe.