Christoffer Åström and Alexander Åström

Based on archaeological artefacts with geometrical motifs, which can be interpreted as projections or impressions of knots and links, we develop mathematical models. These models are the basis for either realisations of knots and links, using purpose made rope or artworks like the above.

From Knots to Braids
5 x 60 x 60 cm
Aluminium and clay

These small objects are modern made replicas of an ancient concept developed in Mesopotamia in the 4th millennia BC, known as cylinder seals. They were used to uniquely identify an object by enrolling the seal onto for instance wet clay making a laterally reversed impression of the content carved on the surface. Some archaeologically encountered seals have carvings more or less resembling knots or links. When enrolling a cylinder seal displaying a knot or a link, like the ones in the figure, the result is a braid. By archaeological means we get an additional and intriguing connection between knot theory and braid theory.