Thursday, 5 January 2012

Sleeping Northern-based Psychogeographer Invents New Unit of Time

Lady Macbeth by Johann Heinrich Füssli.

The Leeds psychogeographer, Tina Richardson, has invented a new unit of time for psychogeographers, while sleeping! This unit of time lasts anything between 10 mins and 1 hour, but is significant because the quantity of time is uncertain to the psychogeographer due to the psycho-aesthetic state they are currently experiencing (what the psychogeographer Iain Sinclair would describe as 'reverie').

This unit of time is called a 'purse' and is rather like a pocket of time. The term refers to both the personal carrying device that contains items for the owner (these items are clearly subjective and reflect the individual owner of the purse), but also to the work of the semiotician Charles Sanders Peirce (pronounced 'purse'). Peirce's system contains 1) a sign 2) an object, and 3) an interpretant. The purse refers to the interpretant such that it is a subjective response to an object/sign that causes a specific state of consciousness for that particular person. For the psychogeographer these objects appear in the form of urban décor that have specific signs attached to them and are responded to by that individual (signs that could be compared to the Barthesian 'myth' e.g. connotative signs or second level semiology).

Ms. Richardson, who runs Leeds Psychogeography Group and guest lectures in schizocartography, said: "I hope that the 'purse' becomes a useful term for psychogeographers because it enables a form of recognition, and hence indexing, to take place that will encourage discussion on these very states that are what psychogeographers both experience and value in their own work." She added: "Also, I am designing an actual psychogeographers purse for wealthy wannabee psychogeographers who like the idea of urban walking but can't be bothered to do the actual walking itself. These designer purses will appear in the form of miniature distressed-looking rucksacks and will include a tiny chest-strap that will enable you to attach it to the designer dog of your choice."

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