Jump to: navigation, search

Open Source Embroidery Project

The Embroidered Digital Commons is a form of close-reading a text by the Raqs Media Collective called ‘A Concise Lexicon of / for the Digital Commons’ (2003). In Belgrade we will read and stitch the term 'Nodes' which describes a nodal structure of networked communication through which ideas travel. This language of social networks is a paradigm shift in how we value, archive and communicate knowledge. Rethinking our network topologies provides the opportunity to map women’s knowledge and writing throughout a range of formats (letters, textiles, texts) through personal and informal networks as well as professional and academic structures.

The definition of 'Nodes' describes a rhizomic structure forming a web of ideas, where cultural memes are repeated and distributed. The text also raises the nature of de-territorialisation.

Nodes: Any structure that is composed of concentrated masses of materials which act as junction points for the branching out of extensible parts of the overall system may be described as nodal. The concentrations or junctions being the nodes. A nodal structure is a rhizomic structure, it sets down roots (that branch out laterally) as it travels. Here, nodes may also be likened to the intersection points of fractal systems, the precise locations where new fractal iterations arises out of an existing pattern. A work that is internally composed of memes is inherently nodal. Each meme is a junction point or a node for the lateral branching out of the vector of an idea. In a work that is made up of interconnected nodes, the final structure that emerges is that of a web, in which every vector eventually passes through each node, at least once on its orbit through the structure of the work. In such a structure it becomes impossible to suppress or kill an idea, once it is set in motion, because its vectors will make it travel quickly through the nodes to other locations within the system, setting off chains of echoes and resonances at each node that trace a path back to the kernel of the idea.

These echoes and resonances are rescensions, and each node is ultimately a direct rescension of at least one other node in the system and an indirect rescension of each junction within a whole cluster of other nodes. Nodes, when written, perhaps erroneously, as 'no-des' gives rise to an intriguing hybrid English/Eastern-Hindi neologism, a companion to the old words - 'des', and 'par-des'. 'Des' (in some eastern dialects of Hindi, spoken by many migrants to Delhi) is simply homeland or native place; 'par-des' suggests exile, and an alien land. 'No-des' is that site or way of being, in 'des' or in 'par-des', where territory and anxieties about belonging, don't go hand in hand. Nodes in a digital domain are No-des." (Raqs Media Collective, 2003)

This definition of Nodes will be stitched by women from many countries, gathering in different configurations of networks to share ideas. For a few days their location will be Belgrade, which like many cities of the world has been claimed and reclaimed, destroyed and rebuilt, and is both par-des (a land of exile) and no-des, (a land of homeless) but is now a node at which people meet.

See also: Open Source Embroidery

AsK, September 2012

Personal tools