May 22, 2022

“See the Extraordinarily Detailed Maps From ‘Lord of the Rings,’ ‘Game of Thrones,’ and Other Fictional Worlds”

From artnet news:

Even authors who create elaborate fictional landscapes need directions sometimes. That much is clear in “Mapping Fiction,” a new exhibition at the Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in California, which examines the ways authors and cartographers have mapped out fantastical worlds both like and unlike our own.

The show coincides with the centennial of James Joyce’s opus, Ulysses, and sure enough, several relics related to the book—including a first edition copy, a typescript draft of one of its chapters, and various intaglio prints of Dublin as described by the author—are on display.

But it wasn’t just the anniversary of Joyce’s novel that inspired the show, explained Karla Nielsen, the Huntington’s curator of literary collections who organized the effort.


Some 70 items gathered from the museum’s collection offer viewers answers to the curator’s prompt. Among the highlights are elaborate maps that accompanied early editions of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island and Kidnapped, and George R. R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones. Meanwhile, Octavia E. Butler’s hand-drawn—and unpublished—diagrams of her own imagined landscapes provide a peek into her processes of writing Parable of the Talents and Parable of the Trickster (which was never published).

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Direct to Mapping Fiction” Exhibition Website, View Images

Direct to “Mapping Fiction” Gallery Guide

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.