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. . . this is getting VERY convoluted . . . ! | by EraPhernalia Vintage . . . [''playin' hook-y''] ;o
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. . . this is getting VERY convoluted . . . !

Evolution of a hyperbolic pseudosphere in crochet. Start at the first photo on the top left and proceed clockwise around to the almost-completed form (the first photo in the second row at far left).


It all started out innocently enough. (I know. I've said that before.)


I was searching for a

bath puff/scrubbie on Ravelry. How could I have known that it would lead to the discovery of the Australian Coral Reef project – the brainchild of an amazing mathematician named Margaret Wertheim, and a minor obsession with the hyperbolic plane in all its myriad forms?!?


My fascination grows, ahem, *exponentially* as I discover the marvelous interpretations of this form and some of the amazing

coral reef projects that have evolved from the act of

two women – twin sisters, one a scientist and the other an artist – getting on board with the idea of creating coral reef creatures and other seaforms, based on the first hyperbolic plane made by mathematician Daina Taimina in the medium of crochet.

(And, if you aren't already suffering from TMI, you can listen to an NPR broadcast of "All Things Considered" hosted by Jacki Lyden called Mathematicians Get Crafty with Geometry

– an interview with Daina Taimina and her fellow-mathematician husband.)


IF you're interested in hyperbolic planes and how they relate to mathematical theory and coral reefs, watching this 15 minute talk is a must. Margaret Wertheim is an extremely engaging speaker. Her brief presentation is witty, ironic, and illuminating. If you're a geek and glad of it, go watch! It's exceptional."


Additional links of interest: From the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History web site Coral Reef exhibit at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. Temporary Exhibit — First Floor, Sant Ocean Hall, Ocean Focus Gallery — October 16, 2010 — April 24, 2011.


The Smithsonian Community Reef:


Up close and personal! This video captures the amazing variety of reef-forms displayed in the Smithsonian exhibit that were knitted and crocheted by women around the world.

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Taken on April 14, 2011