[K]NOTS make for fascinating speculations, not just in relation to string theory and the by-now popular (or popularized) ‘theory of everything’, but also because they have tickled the fancy of many intellectuals, prompting the formulation of an alternative to alphabetical language.
The background theme of all the later searchings of Lacan, for example, is precisely that of the Borromean rings, a knotty way of producing a new vision of clinical psychoanalysis.
[keep on reading: Knotty By Nature, A conversation between Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, William Irvine, Jean-Michel Vappereau and Ed Atkins on Mousse Issue No.50, October 2015 ]
Elena Nemkova works with the elaborations and manifestations of the inexplicable through investigating contemporary science and its findings on human nature and the world as such. Utilising a variety of media, from drawing to video, sculpture to performance, the artist magnifies the interconnected nature of things and the everyday production of intimacy, pronouncing primordial drives through measuring differences and possible convergences between seemingly unclassifiable dimensions. Sourcing her influences from neuroscience and its studies on cognition and the mapping of the brain, she carries out responses in the domain of the visual arts. By doing so, Nemkova seeks to understand some of the mechanisms that guide our society, to underline the existing abyss between progress and the widely diffused ‘scientific illiteracy’, which perhaps prevents a clear understanding by the majority of public of the importance of those discoveries.
[keep on reading: Artissima 2015 Catalogue, Fatos Üstek / Elena Nemkova]
Throughout the 1970s Lacan busied himself with rings of string, weaving knots and lattices in an attempt to construct a topological model that represented the human soul. Referring to one topological form which especially fascinated him during these years – the Borromean knot – his biographer Elisabeth Roudinesco wrote that these were the years that Lacan lived on “planet Borromeo” (p.377).
Lacan surrounded himself with a small group of fiercely intelligent young mathematicians to conduct this work. Michel Thomé and Jean-Michel Vappereau both exchanged around two hundred letters with Lacan on the subject of topology, with Vappereau being invited by Lacan to give a lecture on the Borromean knot at his seminar in 1978.
[keep on reading: From the Bridges of Konigsberg – Why Topology Matters in Psychoanalysis, January 5, 2015]
An assortment of nautical knots are featured in this engraving from the French encyclopedia Le Larousse pour tous: nouveau dictionnaire encyclopédique (1907).
Featured in the original article.
A pale hysteria has emerged, in popular culture and in manycritiques—disconnected as they are from the capacity to sensecontending seismic currents. Beneath it lingers the moroseserenity of the anticipation of a coming catastrophe. Perhaps thisshows up as a failure of nerve, a loss of emancipatory horizons?
We are all tied up in knots now. Or are we?
[keep on reading: A KNOT UNTIED IN TWO PARTS, Supercommunity: e-flux journal for the 56th Venice Biennale, September 3, 2015]