Mariam Ghani

infographic, maps, Queens

Queens is one of the most diverse places on the planet, and it’s believed that around 500 languages are spoken here. Fifty-nine of these, however, are endangered, meaning that those who speak these languages are the last people on Earth who know them. This number is staggering, considering the fact that UNESCO puts the worldwide number of “critically endangered” languages at 574, which is why artist Mariam Ghani has embarked on a mapping project that explores these disappearing tongues. First shared by Fast Co. Design, The Garden of the Forked Tongues is an online, interactive graphic and an acrylic mural in the Queens Museum, both of which plot colored polygons to represent how the languages are distributed throughout the borough.

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