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Artists' Session: On the Border of Consciousness

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Co-authors: Anushka Gangnaik (University College Cork), Tandra Ghoshal (University College Cork), Antoaneta Nikolova (South West University ‘Neofit Rilsky’, Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria), Yordan M. Georgiev (University College Cork), Justin Holmes (University College Cork)

'On the Border of Consciousness' is an Art and Science collaboration project which is illuminated by the power of the Word or Logos. Visual Artist Nedyalka Panova and scientists from Tyndall National Institute explored the intersection of nanotechnology and poetry in the realm of modern life. Using the ultimate methods for miniaturising computers and electronic devices and the shortest poetic form, haiku, the art and science team visualise an artistic interpretation of the invisible laws of nature and how it operates on nanosacale. Confronting the geometrical structure of a poem’s text with polymers, in this case poly(styrene)-block-poly(ethylene oxide), we look at how matter acts when it meets an invisible barrier of consciousness. The artist believes that the meaning of the words in the poems play the key role in the conscience aesthetic of the self-assembly process of the Block Co-Polymers. For the experimental work we use Electron Beam Lithography (EBL) and Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) of Block Co-Polymers (BCP) in conjunction with haiku poems written by members of the team. We explore the interaction between the top-down EBL process and the bottom-up DSA of BCP suggesting that the latter reads and reacts according to the linguistic structure and the physical conditions of the environment which forces it to relocate and orientate in a unique spatial response. The comparison with a natural growth of patterns is inevitable and the parallel with the logic of such forms undoubtedly requires a poetic review of the origin of diversity of evolving forms encountered in nature and pushes our understanding of matter to further abstraction. The new form of creative entanglement generated by the process of self-assembly of thoughts and matter in an abstract entity is an intimation to the creative legacy of George Boole – mathematician, linguist and poet. His studies of logic became the foundation of Logic that we use today as a digital language for a remote communication

This talk is part of the Isaac Newton Institute Seminar Series series.

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