Cities of You

City #50: Yoothnia (Cynthia K)

16 x 20", Gouache and Colored Pencil on Paper

The twists and turns of the streets may be confusing at first as you make your way up the towering vertical city of Yoothnia. Sometimes you need to travel down to travel up, or make a few lefts to turn right. Sometimes it may take hours--perhaps days--to get to your destination. However, the urban planners insist the layout is deliberate, and the streets have been meticulously laid out. They explain that their calculations do not prioritize the shortest distance, the fewest transfers, or the easiest slopes. Instead, they aim to maximize the number of unique people you would bump into during your daily commute. To boost a healthy amount of collaboration and innovation in their city, they ensure lawyers pass by poets, doctors pass by politicians, and scientists pass by priests. Coffee shops are the size of stadiums, filled with eclectic conversations. Parks, void of benches, are filled with pairs of chairs facing each other. And the transit authority, the least funded of the city's public services, is fraught with traffic, repairs, and delays, as commuters hold debates and share stories to pass the time.