Archives for posts with tag: arts

Many artists have also observed fractals in the natural world transferring them into their own works. Yet another artist renowned across the world who incorporated fractals into his work was Salvador Dali. Primarily and predominantly within his painting the ‘visage of war’ (1940), this painting created during Dali’s small stay in California regards concepts of the Spanish Civil War . A the primary interest in this case comes from within the eye sockets and mouth of the face in the painting. There are similar smaller faces within the eye socket and mouth and again within the eye sockets and months of these faces. This suggests a pattern of self-similarity and infinite repetition again and the key characteristics of fractal geometry. Through this infinite pattern Dali seems to be mimicking the infinite pain and anguish of all. Descharnes echoes this in stating “Eyes filled with infinite death”(Descharnes, r, Dali, Harry Abrams, NY 1985) when referring to the unrelenting repetitive nature of the self similarity within Dali’s painting. AS you can see from the second set of images shown below, Dali’s painting mimics a circular form of the cantor set.



G-Nie Arambulos Boysen print ad campaign ‘Flowers’ won a Bronze Lion at the 2009 Cannes International Advertising Festival. This was the second ever Cannes Lion award won by the Philippines and first ever in the print category. Arambulo explained in an interview that every individual part of the photographs (each petal, each color, each stem) was shot individually with actual splatters of Boysen Paint, high-powered, high-speed flash, a Hasselblad camera, and a Phase One Digital back. These images were then merged together to form the final images. This method of working I suspect will be a similar to the methods I will use, shooting all the images separately and later digitally merging them together.   The project required “perfect timing, along with the right combination of lights, equipment, skill, and perseverance.” From a distance these images may look like other  macro photographs of flowers, only upon closer inspection is it clear they are incredibly more than that. These flowers were not from Mother Nature but, rather, man-made through and through…

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The layering method adopted by Arambulos s, creating what is effectively a montage of images is what i have taken most from the works. This technique has led me to thinking of using a different style of editing for my video, previously i made a single frame containing all the content and then ran each frame next to one another…. However now i believe a more pleasing aesthetic can be achieved by running a multitude of frames layered upon each other simultaneously. In doing so id ‘should’ have more control of the animation of each still image within each frame.

In a 1904 letter to Emile Bernard, Paul Cézanne wrote, “everything in nature is modeled according to the sphere, the cone, and the cylinder. You have to learn to paint with reference to these simple shapes; then you can do anything.”

In contrast, in the Fractal Geometry of Nature Benoit Mandelbrot takes a different point of view: “Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, and bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line.”

To the extent that the arts are informed by nature, we should not be surprised to find fractal aspects in the visual arts. The extent of this presence, much of it largely unconscious, may be a surprise. Fractals may have become a cliché in modern computer graphics, but they have a long and rich history in art

Although not being defined or labelled until 1976 fractals have been observed  throughout history, manifesting themselves visually throughout different cultures through artefacts and artworks resonating strongly throughout many if not all major world cultures and religions as shown here.



This an image from the Medieval Celtic Book of Kells (597 A.D)

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These are black and white Persian Rug examples


The above image is a birds-eye architectural plan of an ethiopian village. fractals

are evident throughout African art and culture, however this was my favourite.


The image on the left is a traditional Islamic artwork, whereas the image on

the left is a computer generated rendering of the Mandelbrot set.

The similarities are obvious and evident.


The above depicts and ancient Egyptian symbolism, again a fractal.



This symbol is a well known Jewish icon.


For me, most interestingly of the religious symbols is this one from


 The Italian renaissance and dutch matters even took influence from unknowingly observing fractals in nature. by using a method of iteration with the desired material the artist were able to create increasingly realistic natural forms.  For example The Dutch painter Jan Van Goyen (1596-1656) was capable of creating realism a picture with “small efforts” from stains of colors. Compare Van Goyen’s painted clouds with the typical fractal computer-generated “cloud”


Left is a section of a painting of Goyen’ Two men on a Footbridge

over a stream. To the right is a cloud generated by an iteration computer


The next number of  posts will be regarding artists that have not only worked around the concepts of fractals but also artists that have influenced me within my own work.