The Braid diagram shown here is a ‘prepared’ instrument (in the sense of a prepared piano), annotated to aid users in discussing and comparing how they recognize and work within the forcefields they inhabit. It is aimed specifically at artists and other cultural producers.
The diagram contains verbal prompts that emerged from individual conversations with artists, who derive agency from more or less intentionally integrating epistemic, critical and administrative needs and capacities into an idiosyncratic practice. Prompts are associated with a path wound around a continuum. The path is represented by a trefoil, the continuum by a torus. These mathematical shapes evoke topology as a metaphor through which to inclusively model and also brace the practices of cultural practitioners.
The key prompts are marked by an alliteration:
(1) Making includes forms of attention, epistemic and material work processes, in the studio or equivalent.
(2) Mediating contains forms of reflection on all aspect of cultural practice, and verbal articulation of narratives among stakeholders.
(3) Managing broadly frames generative and normative institutional exposures.
These areas may expand or contract at different times of practice. There is no specified point of entry.
The Braid may also be prepared with different prompt sets.