Mandelbrot speaks

Posted by Kitara Julian On 10:52 AM
Yesterday we devoted our post to Fractals as seen from my point of view as an artist. Today we share a quote sent by a friend, from the pioneer mathematician Benoit B. Mandelbrot in his seminal book “The Fractal Geometry of Nature”:
"Clearly, competing with artists is not at all a purpose of this essay. Nevertheless, one must address this issue. The question is not whether the illustrations are neatly drawn and printed, and the originals being drawn by computer is not essential either, except in terms of economics.
But we do deal with a new form of the controversial but ancient theme that all graphical representations of mathematical concepts are a form of art, one that is best when it is simplest, when (to borrow a painter's term) it can be called "minimal art".
It is widely held that minimal art is restricted to limited combinations of standard shapes: lines, circles, spirals, and the like. But such need not be the case.
The fractal used in scientific models are also very simple (because science puts a premium on simplicity). And I agree that many may be viewed as a new form of minimal geometric art...
The fractal "new geometric art" shows surprising kinship to Grand Masters paintings or Beaux Arts Architecture.
An obvious reason is that classical visual arts, like fractals, involve very many scales of length and favor self-similarity.
For all these reasons, and also because it came in through an effort to imitate Nature in order to guess its laws, it may well be that fractal art is readily accepted because it is not truly unfamiliar. . ." (Benoit Mandelbrot)

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