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8th July 2016, 2:03pm
Boole's laws of thought inspire new sculpture by the Brayford
New sculpture inspired by George Boole A new sculpture inspired by the genius of George Boole, the Lincoln-born mathematician whose work laid the theoretical foundations for the digital age, has been unveiled on the banks of Lincoln’s Brayford Pool.

The artwork, composed of two interlocking arcs coated in a sheer reflective surface which mirrors both the structure itself and the surrounding water and foliage, has been created by the internationally-acclaimed Raqs Media Collective.

Entitled Perhaps (An Investigation Outside the Laws of Thought) it will be in situ on the banks of the Brayford Pool close to University of Lincoln’s main Minerva Building for two months from today (8th July 2016).

The temporary art installation was commissioned by Gymnasium, the contemporary art commissioning programme that presents new works in public locations in the city of Lincoln, alongside print editions and associated exhibitions.

Its design recalls the ‘logic gates’ which Boole first proposed in his groundbreaking book, An Investigation of the Laws of Thought (1854). This work provided the theoretical underpinnings for the development of the first computer circuits a century later – leading to Boole being heralded as the grandfather of the digital age. In 2015 the city of Lincoln celebrated 200 years since Boole’s birth.

Jeanine Griffin, Reader in Contemporary Curatorial Practice at the University of Lincoln, who leads the Gymnasium art commissioning programme, said: “This new sculpture pays testament to a truly revolutionary thinker whose ideas continue to transform the way we live 150 years on. Boole’s legacy is all around us: in every computer, smartphone and digital device. We hope members of the public will enjoy this latest commission in the Gymnasium series, which connects Boole’s ideas with the physical place of his birth by means of an inspiring new artwork by internationally renowned artists.”

Artist Monica Narula, from New Delhi-based Raqs Media Collective, said: “Lincoln was George Boole’s birthplace. He must have walked by Brayford Pool, asking questions that needed answers in ‘yes’, ‘no’, and perhaps, ‘perhaps’.
“This work remembers those moments outside the boundaries of yes and no, just outside the limits placed by the laws of thought.”

Gymnasium is a contemporary art commissioning programme led by Jeanine Griffin at the University of Lincoln, UK, and funded by Arts Council England, together with the Henry Moore Foundation, The Elephant Trust, the Heslam Trust, the Magna Carta 800 Trust and the Goethe Institute. See:

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