Cheap or costly
Models of the fifth dimension
in relation to the exhibition "Stromlinien" (streamlines) by Almut Grypstra

1. Movement models from pre-television times

Last week I kept Almut Grypstra away from work for 3 hours. She had started with the erection for her installation here and when I was looking around I discovered in the basement a machine for unravelling a skein. During my stay between the yarn balls I remembered the bumbling movement of those yarn reservoirs that I watched at my knitting great aunts. In those days looking at this required a lot of patience because occasionally it could take a minute or longer until the wool string which lay loosely on the floor was knitted so tight that the ball on the floor was pulled closer. By pulling at that string that stuck to the ball with its hairy surface the ball received a movement impulse once in a while which pushed it bit by bit  across the floor as if by ghost's hand at which occasion a further bit of string was unravelled.

Was it here still about a piece of pre-television history with slow picture sequence so with Grypstra are more than a dozen skeins connected to the machine which now is powered by an electric motor which unravels a large amount of strings at the same time. Even that does not just happen with speed, and maybe I should make it understood that I saw the installation as a model becasue the engine was copied in cardboard at first and shaped by creasing and folding. That is why the in its immobility frozen model seemed to me like a drawing extended into the 3rd dimension; because edges, sticky tape and strings worked as lines spread out in the room.

This point of view determined our talks where the subject 'models' was prevalent. We spoke about models in natural science and technic as
well as the advantages of models in art which is not guided by efficiency obligations  that ingenieurs in industry have to follow when constructing. More than with these models conformities unfold between artists and researchers who have to represent something that eludes the senses - be it in micro- or macrocosm. As well belonging here are proceedings in the subatomic world that can be presented by mathematical forms but react paradoxically when transferred to visible space and time conceptions which is why they withheld themselves from a represented visibility. Trials to still manage to do so become therefor vastly complex and sometimes even monstrous. The most simple atom, the hydrogen atom, has only one electron. But because it can be positioned on different tracks and levels and be in different conditions of impulse-input  its representation is not an easy task.

* Amongst the manifold trials from a natural science point of view there are especially beautiful ones like the modeled with spectral colors by Bernd Thaller::  page 15, and there is a factual
overview of all possible orbits on which the electron may be  positioned:

Would one simply copy the drawing by Thaller with wooden pieces one could think of the hoops that Grypstra has installed here. Even though these are 9-sided or 12-sided polygons with different diameters  which are connected parallel-wise as same-sized pairs they appear round for the eye. In EINSTELLUNGSRAUM they are distributed accidentally. Would someone want to take the task of sorting them on a  centerline one would get close to an embodiment that Thaller gave the hydrogen atom. The hoops - with those with the largest diameter in the middle and the smallest each in front and behind -  do also get very close to a framework of the shape of a spindle. When I then think of the title of the exhibition "Stromlinie" such a spindle may be substantiated as an object, even though everything that reminds of the smoothness of a streamline is avoided by Grypstra. With that one gets more the impression that the artist wants to withdraw herself from a typical construct of technical or natural-scientific beauty.  Her statement:  "I build machines that withdraw themselves from economic productivity. 
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