Sunday, 14 February 2010

Reductions in Emergence

Heart in the Cosmos

Heart on a sleeve

Commercial appeasement

The starry, romantic cardiac annomily is the result of two colliding galaxies. It happens in all shapes and sizes!
Happy Valentines.
Emergence is the philosophical debate that covers the old axiom that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. One interpretation of this is, that there is something else apart from the constituants of an entity. That in unity, entirety becomes a greater force than a collection. It is a popular and enduring philosophical and scientific debate. I find it fascinating and inspirational.
Humans as individuals are complicated and unique assemblages. (Stating the bleedin` obvious!)
Joined in force as a race there is something more than atoms and molecules. More than physical, more than can be explained by equation and reasoning.
Phenomenological and emergent concepts like interconnection and unity are important issues that inform my practice. The philosphical opposite is reductionism. Here is a link to a lecture on the Royal Society web site, that I really enjoyed.
The sympoisum on artistic collaborations I attended this week provided emergent food for thought. One lecturer suggested that the current increaseing trend for collaboration in the art world, is a form of direct response to the decrease of unity through direct political action, that requires mass physical presence. There is a vast increase in the trend for internet networking, and a massive increase in social grouping and political activism through internet sites. Previously, membership to a specific group or party required attendance and physical affilliation, sometimes even a physical image or uniform. This provided identity, support and companionship. It is interesting to watch the enthusiasm with which the public will exersize the right to vote commercially through the household media, but struggle with the politcal apathy rife in the U.K. at this time. Even groups such as the womens institue have suffered with membership numbers. As a race we need communication and contact with each other, thats not news. What is interesting is the manifestation of various substitutes, which attempt to compensate for physical alienation.


  1. I had never thought about the connections made on the internet being an outcry for the lack of connections in society at large. There is a point where we connect with people and invest more time in people that live further away from us.

    In reality even though I have a lot of connections on the internet, I realize that I am still not very well connected in my community. I lack a lot of physical connections. This causes me to lose touch with what is going on right here right now...and live even though in the art a virtual "game" of sorts.

    Sometimes I have become depressed about I look at other blogs via ing for attention and wonder why am I doing this. What is the point? Am I just adding to the noise. Are we all acting like we have something to say but we are too afraid to say it? Are we disconnected?

    I think that what happened here in the US is that the salaries did not increase over the last 20 years....I mean significantly in comparison to inflation. This created less household income that could go for extras...and it also made families have to work longer hours to make ends meet. Then you had the housing boom/bust, where people opted to live far away from their job so that they could have a house...then they had less time to enjoy the house...the house nearly became virtual as they spent more time talking about the house than actually "living in the house". IMO. Spending a lot of time in the car instead.

    We were condition to isolate even as children when we were compartmentalized in our experience with other children by being put only with our own age group. Families are not built around the same age group. It is not a natural progression but a man made institution. On and on...blah blah blah...I know it is the decay of society we are all talking about.

    What to do? Create dialog that is more meaningful and pushes people to think. Invest time in building relationships. Learn things that will help your neighbor when there is a crisis. That is one of the things that I am trying to do in a small way on my Hard Times Living More With Less blog.
    You can find it by going to my profile and seeing my other blogs.

    Thank you for being a thinker!!!! I wish there were more of us.