Monthly Archives: February 2014

Lüscher, The Lüscher Colour Test

Lüscher, M, 1972, The Lüscher Colour Test, Transl. I Scott, Pan Books

When I was a student at Bristol Poly, Influenced my understanding of how our perception of colour is subjective and may relate to our psychological mood as well as lighting conditions and other perceptual considerations.


Map Making and Mapping

In the introduction to their book Mapping; Ways of Representing the World Daniel Dorling and David Fairbairn write that “The physical creation of maps which embody the ‘world-view’ of … societies is the process of map-making. This can be distinguished from the mental interpretation of the world which is termed mapping.”

Dorling and Fairbairn, Mapping; Ways of Representing the World

Dorling, D and Fairbairn, D,1997, Mapping; Ways of Representing the World, Longman

I discovered this book in the library at Bournemouth Uni and it opened my mind to a relationship between art and the abstraction involved in mapping. They articulate a process of critical selection used in map-making that is also applied by artists when making work as varied as life-drawing, photography, film-making, in fact nearly any situation where they choose to represent something. Be it a thought or something seen in the actual world.

Cognitive Maps

In a 1948 paper entitled Cognitive Maps in Rats and Men Edward C Tolman argued that the responses of rats navigating mazes were based on cognitive maps, a cognitive map being a “… tentative map, indicating routes and paths and environmental relationships …”. He went on to hypothesise that “… too strong motivations or … too intense frustration…” might cause “narrowing” in the cognitive maps in humans and that this could be related to “individual and social maladjustments”.

The overcode; a consequence of mapping behaviour?

A few year ago I came across Brian Holmes’ blog post ‘ESCAPE THE OVERCODE: Guattari’s Schizoanalytic Cartographies, or the Pathetic Core at the Heart of Cybernetics’ and it really got me thinking to find that this idea, that had been knocking around in my head for years, regarding mapping behaviour had emerged among a zeitgeist of a particularly well-read and presumably better academically-informed people who might have already discussed the idea at length, perhaps using a different expression to describe it. That I had perhaps picked it up or reconstructed it from partially formed ideas left over from reading material that intersected this area of discussion seems to hint at a way that mapping works. But also how vulnerable we are due to it possibly being at the core of being human if wea re not aware that we are doing it.

The relationship between the overcoding concept and my concerns about the use or misuse of concepts drawn from solutions to programming computers but applied in the human realm appear to shared and well-articulated. More links about this in the future I hope.