Friday, July 13, 2007

Some Thoughts on Preparations for Consideration of Some of a Limited Fork's Limitations

—Oh, and I didn't mean for this to sound as technical as (maybe) it does, association with some stuffiness here and there. I mean, this is about a fork after all —Did I forget that?

Assume an eating utensil of a common or uncommon metal, or of plastic.
Assume that this moment has been arrived at through many other moments that won't be directly considered here
other than how certain configutations of history might supply more leverage to the fork and other set ups might help it break, bend, or fade more easily.

While the fork indeed is a tool of access, grasped to seize something that the fork transports, usually to a mouth.
The fork also delays intimate contact, puts off tactile handling, so can poke around and do the dirty work of touching that which is considered undesirable, toxic, unworthy of direct contact. But even then, the fork is accessing somthing so that the user of the fork need not touch it. If a plastic fork has made the contact with the undesirable or the hazardous, the fork too may be easily discarded, is meant to assist in access for an abbreviated length of time. It isn't meant to endure or be able to stick to any heirloom status thrust on it; the plasticity itself is meant to disignate the plastic fork as disposable. This is not to say that the plastic fork could completely resist efforts to make it collectible, or to make it become part of high art, or to make become a tool that applies paint to an art surface, or to make it become the art surface to which art product, perhaps just a title, is attached. Perhaps this is a good location to direct you to a review of Miquel Coyula's film The Plastic Fork.

But the plastic fork, staying with the literal, because Limited Fork Poetics and Limited Fork Science do not prohibit the literal —this is very important. Associating the literal with the surface for an extended moment, I must point out the complexity of the surface, and that in bypassing the surface to access something deeper, the surface is often insufficiently studied, so isn;t likely to be sufficiently understood. And considering just how many interactions occur on surfaces (or at boundaries which are forms of surfaces), and considering that surfaces occur in interior locations as well as exterior locations, and that when digging into something, more surface tends to be revealed, surface as a point of contact, as an interaction site —surely my heart has a surface, more than one, the outer surface and the other side of that surface. The surface of my skin has two sides, an interior as well as an exterior. That something doesn't penetrate the surface may be revelatory, at least in part, of something about the nature and substance of that surface in a particular location, as the surface may not be the same in every location at every miment. An event or interaction need not occur over an entire surface but may be confined to increadibly local areas. Two of my favorite books about surfaces are: "On the Surface of Things" (Felice Frankel, George Whitesides, full of compelling pictures —to make the science more accessible and appealing to more people) and "A Search for Structure" by Cyril Stanley Smith (another book by him, too, actually: "Structure and Properties of Solid surfaces). Patterns on surfaces seem to outcomes of dynamic processes, and it's both interesting to understand the depth (or limits) of a pattern, and how pattern changes as it's followed through (or on) surfaces that may also be changing, and not necessarily uniformly or at the same rate as changes in pattern. Many patterns do seem to fork, bifurcate, or repeat on some scale. For a consideration of dynamic form in nature, click here.

Even without super highpowered scanning and magnification techniques that Frankel used, it's still possible to access some of what is just beyond unassisted human visual perception. Tactile interaction, using the hand as the limited fork it approximates, the fingers as tines; tactile interacrions can often expose more about textures of surfaces than visual consideration. And an oral form of tactrile encounter can reveal more still, not that all surfaces should/can be tasted. I use a usb microscope with my laptop to scan surfaces at 50X magnification, beyond what I can see unassisted, yet not so magnified that I lose all connection with the unassisted look of surfaces. Even though, gradations of smooth, rough, bumpy emerge, and the tendency of accuracy of observations to be very localized is quickly emphasized. Hours of fun also. The video poam "In Your Face" was made using a 50X USB microscope:

The plastic fork for many is problematic because of the plastic, the nonsustainable source of plastic, and plastic's longevity in dumps and landfills. I can envision some white-tipped lawns as tips of tines of forks that wouldn't stay buried after the passingof a few generations of humans (I can also envision this as fence stubble —see an earlier post). Biodegradable disposable eating utensils are now emerging as discussed in the article Ridding the World of Plastic Forks

Problems with looking at surfaces tend to be reconfigured into challenges of interpretation and analysis when the surface hosts art; many paintings and drawings exist on only one of the surfaces of a canvas or a sheet of paper. In many museum and gallery settings, most quests of the art do not mind not accessing to the other surface of the art presented as paintings and drawings. Continuity of surface and continuity of art is more associated with 3D pieces called sculpture and installation (the three-dimensional canvas treated more like 2D representation —and paint has thickness!). But anyway, words tend to be printed on the surface of paper. The ink may actually penetrate the paper, but that isn't usually perceptible to us, and when the words occupy the surface differently, often there are words for these departures from ordinacy occupany of the surface of the paper without an interaction with depth, emboss and engrave, for instance. So the fork has surfaces and accesses surfaces, is usually grasped on the surface when in use, that which falls between the tines falls between surfaces of the tines and not into the depth of the tines though it may a depth that is perceived as what is being fallen into.

The fork can more neatly and elegantly navigate certain substances, can allow liquids to flow between tines, briefly channeling the liquid into strands (unless the fork is made of substances whose structure permit the liquids to flow through, perhaps altering the speed of the liquid's flowing, not all strands passing through the more open structured tines at the same time, differences in distance being possible, and differences in the thickness or other properties of the tines and the shape of the space between them. As the user manipulates it, food or other stringy stuff can be swirled aorund around the fork (for a middle school science fair project five years ago, a team of kids modified a batter-powered toothbruch to be able to wind spaghetti around itself although there are battery-powered forks made to do that, and the rotating hairs or tines of my vacuum cleaner's main brush wings fibers around itself all the time although I don't want it to), a coil of pasta easily suggesting other things that could not possibly coil around the fork yet the fork activates, supports access to physical impossibilities that the mind is able to construct.

There are times in which hair flying out from a head seems to fly out in long, limp tines or lines of an elongated fork; amplitude in the movement may be apparent. It is the separation of the strands that's significant here; a clump of hair or whole head of calm hair as a model of a seemingly (scale dependent perception) static tine, but a shift of scale (say magnification) and the single clump is obviously made of components, and there is space between components even if only in the form of the space that the boundaries occupy. As magnification increases, there may be more and more apparent space between the components present at each level of magnification.

There are tines through which some of what was grasped slips, whether or not the user of the fork is aware; there is likelihood that a totality was not successfully accessed by the fork. There is possibility or likelihood that what was accessed by the fork may be altered by access itself, an outcome of the intersction with the fork at the moment of capture. There is possibility or likelihood that as what is accessed is transported (for the fork is a transporation system) from one location to another, that some particle of what is being transported is shed or that a particle is gained as what is being trasported interacts with what it moves through, with the vehicle, and with the constituents of the destination. By design, the limited fork cannot capture everythinfg. In Limited Fork Poetics, there is acknowledgment that outcomes are based on partial considerations and may be applicable to only conditions so localized or specified, that meaning can be questioned, that meaning cannot be assumed. In Limited Fork, what is forked up spends so much on dynamic variables (including mindset of the user of the fork) that conditions that produced outcomes may not be duplicatable, just as the outcomes may not be duplicatable. The gaps in limited fork, the negative as well as the postive spaces are part of interactions, are members of the interacting community, and behave differently. Outcomes or poams that cross or straddle or spend time in one then the other or that oscillate with some regularity or irregularity will behave differently from poams that (apparently) remain in positive or negative space (which may also be referred as positive or negative tines.

The partiality that the fork accesses may exclude any portion of the beginning, any portion of the middle, any portion of the end, or any possible combination on some scale. The partiality excluded may not interact the same as it is considered on multiple scales. Limited Fork Investigations join activities in progress. Limited Fork investigations leave activities in progress. The investigation itself may produce feedback poams as part of the outcomes. It is possible that the poam may approach reasonable consideration as being only a feedback outcome, a response to investigation. Malfunction as an outcome is a poam as is function. Either function or malfunction may navigate negative and positive spaces and structures. Any way that a space or structure may be occupied for any length of time is an appropriate outcome for a poam, as if the configuration of the outcome of conceivable, then it should exist. The Limited Fork is actively trying to identity the forms that are impossible so allows any form that is possible for the circumstances of interactions at some period of time on some or multiple scales. Tines of a Limited Fork may cross many boundaries and dimensions, accessing something in none, some, all of them, but not necessarily at the same time. It may not be possible to definitively pinpoint where what is accessed has come from if in accessing it, the fork crossed multiple boundaries and/or dimentions on multiple scales.

Limited Fork therefore urges its users to document (in some way) the investigations carefully, capturing what decisions andare made, how the decisons are made, and why the decisions are made, and the outcomes of the decisioms. The documentation itself can be a poam or poams, and may exist in multiple forms, as shaped by what is being ivestigated, and the circumstancesof the investigation. Articulation of the rationale the user of the limited fork is applying to the investigation and using to guide the decisions is what, in a graded interaction, is valuable even over aesthetic consideration, since the art is perceived by the limited fork itself (another of its limits) as being coincidental to the investogation of something. It may become necessary to modify the investigation as it progresses and outcomes shape the investigation. Modificartion may become necessary at any time, even when modification is not convenient. Such an outcome should be addressed in the documentation. That the documentation is art is possible, perhaps likely, but is not the only purpose of mapping the investigation. Mapping the investigation and making art can both drive the use of the limited fork, but art isn't necessarily an outcome, and evidence usually is.

There is more to potentially be responsible for when using a limited fork, but an irresponsible forker may not take all (to the extent that the allness may be determind) or some of that responsibility. Shunned responsibility may contribute to positive or negative occupancy or positive or negative structures. Some portion of responsibility may be oart of what is not picked up with the limited fork or may be part of what falls off the limited fork or may be part of what clings to the limited fork when is accessed is taken in. There is possibility or likelihood that all the partiality that is transported by the Limited Fork does not get taken in for consideration. Spaces between tines may widen, narrow, close for some length of time on some scale.

These starter principles alone are sufficient to transform the form of poam produced through use of a Limited Fork.
A community of limited forks is so happy about that, they're dancing.

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