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Exploration of Natural Design

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Exploration of Natural Design

In 2006 I undertook a study of the geometry of nature, and began a body of art that explored the exquisite design inherent in the world around us. I used "A Beginner’s Guide to Constructing the Universe" (subtitled “The Mathematical Archetypes of Nature, Art, And Science”) by Michael S. Schneider as my main sourcebook.
The whole project was actually born in a moment of fixing a salad for dinner one day. I paused for a moment to hold up a slice of cucumber and looked at it with the light behind it. The symmetry and beauty of that simple cuke slice, the pattern of the seeds, and the threefold geometry of its construction were irresistible. I was hooked.
I made a large book (see the photo here of pages 6-7) and started keeping notes in it about geometry, number, and nature. I also created a series of paintings of the natural mandalas in cross-sections of familiar vegetables, branching out from cucumbers to zucchinis, squashes, and carrots. Most of them were painted on shaped round canvases.
In order to better draw attention to the beauty of the forms, I played with the color. A cucumber-colored painting of a cucumber slice is nothing but a recognizable cucumber. But a brilliantly colored painting of a cucumber slice displays its internal geometry in a way that goes far beyond salad. The delicate calligraphy of the structural elements in a carrot cross-section has to be seen to be believed.
This exploration eventually grew into my Moments of Transcendence work, a collection of miniature panels that began with the vegetable mandalas and grew until it encompassed flowers, seashells, pinecones, and more. But that is another story.