June 19th, 2012 / 5:53 pm

Crystalographers’ Ars Poetica

"Untitled" (1980-1998) by Lee Bontecou

 …the epigraph from the 2nd edition of Christian Bök’s, Crystalography:

Crystallographers… have opened the gate that gives access to a vast land, but they themselves have not entered for they are by nature more interested in the means by which to open the portal rather than in the domain that lies beyond it…

Long ago during my wanderings, I happened to chance upon the neighbourhood of this domain. I saw a high wall, and because I had a presentiment of some enigma that might be hiding behind it, I climbed the wall with difficulty. On the other side, I landed in a wilderness through which I had to make my way with much effort until I arrived via detours at the open gate – the open gate of mathematics, from which many clear paths extended in all directions…

Sometimes I think that I have explored this entire garden, that I have trodden all it’s paths, and that I have admired all it’s views, when all of a sudden I detect another new pathway, and once again I savor another new delight…

I spend time there, in refreshing, but oppressive loneliness.

- M.C. Escher

from “The Regular Division of the Plane”