toggle to "SITE" for Great Knot land art project

Rope 3-14; 1968
shaping an Internet ethos


The emergence of the Internet is as remote in time from the beginnings of Blockchain as the systemic concept of the knots in this web site are from the personal computer. Between this geometry, where knots conceptualize unending discoveries forever, and Blockchain technology protocols, just three generations, and half a century, of human adaptability have passed... not nearly enough time to absorb what this all means.

In terms of expectations from a conceptual art, appreciation for what crypto concepts have opened digital technology to, for ordering sequential growth, has led to provenance being recognized as inseparable from the ethos of a value system, and; for the individual one-of-a-kind entries of Blockchain concern; records of value.

The plan for knots, in this crypto space they find themselves, is now part of a Internet designed for universally applying a decentralized record of trusted identities. The context of dimension and structure this art's creations bring to the typical Internet presence explains inseparability in the means by which it governs how the generation of a knot sequence takes place.

As a simple application of logic, knots open the world to a process of adding the next in a sequence by having a genesis contract in Blockchain technology demonstrate systemic design in perpetual motion. In an opposite fashion to Bitcoin, which limits the number of hash codes to guarantee that rarity stabilizes value, knots are applying a concept that brings certainty to trust in the value of its product through a graphically analytical logic.

Creation, in this art, is response to a number code broadcast to anyone that has the grid structure that sets the graphic logic the sequence is based on, that this web site presents. The top ten responses are accepted by consensus of the first one hundred autonomous individuals on the Internet to judge their submission as correct, and the earliest time-stamp response is entered in that solution's block of the Blockchain as the owner of it.

The ten that submitted the correct knot collaborate and submit the next knot to be added to the sequence and when that is recognized as correct by one hundred responses this is released for solutions. The entire process is autonomous and operated under protocols that govern the registry's growth, under that smart contract initiated as the genesis block of the Blockchain.

The remaining nine have divided among them the numbered modules identified with that knot in the knot's block. Numbered modules, created by the program for each addition to the knot sequence placed on the Blockchain, are a byproduct of the generative use of the grid, and are added to have a cryptocurrency as an incentive structure to attract participants.

With knots organized from the records of their creation within Blockchain technology, a token identity for each becomes a utility function that is inseparable from that of the artist in this conceptual art. Therefor, the issue becomes, how does the content in these tokens affect the world of art – as a presence?
a game of knots
Those that create art stake the time they spend doing that, first, in their art being something unique and valuable; and second, the thought that the attributes that make it art have lasting value. Having the Blockchain now to follow value that is staked on a token ID gives art a conceptual presence on the Internet that fully integrates this common creative conscious into the Internet's reach and adoption throughout the world.

Art identity's association with Blockchain technology has so conflated the sense that a Non-Fungible Token (NFT) identity is about its authenticity that representations of tokens on the Blockchain have already made “NFT” a canonical art term for a technology guaranteeing an art's value, with the result that trust in the Blockchain has been extended to the expectation that the technology gives integrity to the artwork itself.

The way knots are made to fit into an identity as an NFT is by representing them as digital records of the unique geometry that displays them as GPS coordinates using code that opens them on Google Earth from a KML file available from an IPFS (Inter-Planetary File Service) Internet protocol address.

Knots are geometric identities, in a mathematical sense, that an NFT adds cryptography to, in the form of a hash code, and Google Earth adds GPS coordinates to every point of, for an image composed of all the digital primitives a Blockchain recognizes in a virtual identity. The NFT of an object on Google Earth is emphasizing the rare state of fitting into the physical world, yet never deviating from being a digital property of a virtual world.

Google Earth Pro is the best that technology has to offer for being continually available to view a knot that a NFT represents as permanent on the Blockchain. As a platform that uses the Internet as a medium for the digital imagery that supports an essential infrastructure, knots made into the GPS code of the KML file format and saved there, as their digital medium, are as permanently available there as their token is on the Blockchain.
reality check
The Great Knot is a sigil for how the Internet's inseparability from the Graphic User Interface is applied as a medium to Art. In the two pressing concerns this addresses, one looks to a broad involvement in Blockchain applications of plans in a future where examples of knot generation build the creative side of the Internet as a way to interact. It looks forward to when everyone in this growing world of Internet connections competes for either having their own knot – as a meme identity of sorts – or for being spiritually attached to everyone that shares that goal with them.

But our ever increasing acceptance and trust in the virtual is what this is most intent on having an impact on. The main context this conceptual art addresses is an examination of the existence of value. Knots embody a concept of infinitely different analytic ideas having analogs in the actual world that makes art rare, and validate a context for seeking value in anything worthy of examining and emulating in this, exposing everything else as an allusion to uniqueness.

What The Great Knot does is provide an example of the first knot in the sequence as a land art sculpture large enough to be seen on Google Earth. Because it is a physically accessible, application of the geometry from the grid for this knot is what all knots that are added to the sequence are scaled to. To stress this, each new knot is built using identifiers traceable in this knot, and recorded, like it, in commonly recognized number schemes, with Blockchain as a registry, using their token ID for the broader relationships to real objects in the world..
the value of art
The closest digital parallel to an allusion to value are the relationships of the images on this Internet site to objects that are certified as made from an actual plan for what they are as knots. Like all the sides and surfaces of The Eternal Object geometry in this .gif animation,

Eternal Object; design, 1972 (animation, 2012)
they are really just digital code – the image is an illusion. No illusion's existence can be legitimated. Only with awareness of the context of their creation can the images of this page be trusted to exist.

This is the context that plans for knots represent. In everything that can be made to exist there is the concept in the variety of unique objects created in the form of a particular knot plan that is as unimaginably vast as the number of unique knots that there are in all existence.

Rope 22, 1968
ErinAnna's Knot, 2015

This art naturally extends to the possibility that every knot plan is a knot form. What is produced will always be both a new object and an awareness of the creative experience of conceptualizing it.

This experience can be realized in just knotting a rope or length of ball chain, or in constructing a monumental earthwork. The Great Knot Project demonstrates an example of what extremes the art can be taken to.

The Great Knot is a 3/4 acre-large 3 crossing knot

Eternal Object; design, 1972 (artist with maquettes, 2016/17)

6(red); 10(blue): 1998
Or it can be just the knot's idea explored in unimaginable dimensions only visitable in a virtual construction and worked out in maquettes to resolve the ways this can become a monumental geometric sculpture.

Traditional art objects can be created that use a knot design as a theme for a painting or print.

Enantiomorphic Pair, Serigraph 1982

For now, let's just focus on the interpretive side of an illusionary symbolism that is what the Internet offers. This can have the aesthetic of the certificate that is the NFT and still carry an individual message as art. It is this that is "minted" for the imagination, and demonstrated in the symbolic references to value shaped out over these pages, that allude to an Internet ethos.

digital token developments, 2018

The Great Knot, April 27, 2011

Michael Sullivan Smith, 2015
Click on animation to open parent web site in new browser window