124 drawings, 38 halftones, 2 maps

Embedded Symmetries, Natural and Cultural

Edited by Dorothy K. Washburn



The ten participants in this volume explore nonrepresentational patterns from perceptual and cultural perspectives. Archaeologists, anthropologists, art historians, and psychologists lend their views on how patterns and symmetry are expressed and resonate in a variety of human relationships and institutions. The authors reveal how symmetric relationships in human visual, verbal, and kinesthetic manifestations are integral to cultural identity.
Diane Humphrey uses developmental studies of children and adults to explore how humans learn to recognize and reproduce symmetry. Michael Kubovny and Lars Strother focus on mathematically- and perceptually-based understandings of symmetry while Thomas Wynn uses the production of symmetrical tools as a basis for analysis. Dorothy Washburn attempts to understand why symmetrical representations take the forms they do, and she develops an evolutionary model of the development of representational formats. Anne Paul seeks to understand the logic behind color and structure of Paracas textiles, and Ed Franquemont examines conceptual expression in Andean weaving. Peter Roe presents evidence that the Amerindian world view can be found in design organization on ceramic vessels while F. Allan Hanson and Rod Ewins investigate the symmetries of art in Maori and Fijian cultures. Ultimately, this volume hopes to engage multidisciplinary approaches to the study of pattern and symmetry and how they influence human cultural formation and identity.

About the Contributors
Rod Ewins is Honorary Research Associate and retired professor, Tasmanian School of Art, University of Tasmania, Tasmania, Australia.
Ed Franquemont, an archaeologist and anthropologist, leads Peruvian tours for Textile Society of America and resides in New Haven, Connecticut.
F. Allan Hanson is professor of social anthropology, University of Kansas, Lawrence.
Diane Humphrey teaches in the department of psychology, King's College, London, Ontario.
Michael Kubovy is professor of psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville.
Anne Paul, now deceased, was affiliated with Allée des Vergers, Villers-lés-Nancy, France.
Peter Roe is professor of anthropology, University of Delaware, Newark.
Lars Strother teaches in the department of psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville.
Thomas Wynn is professor of anthropology, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

Contributor Bios
Dorothy K. Washburn is a visiting scholar at the University of Arizona. She lives in Titusville, New Jersey.