Friday, April 4, 2008

The Golden Ratio

We spoke briefly in class about weather certain things or ideas are actually everywhere or we just focus in on them and are convinced they are. I know that often when I learn a new word, I begin to hear it all the time. Obviously the word has been around, but I just hadn’t focused on it before. In Pi, Max becomes obsessed with the Fibonacci Spiral and notices it all around him. Here is a video about the Golden Ratio and the Fibonacci Spiral.



When I watched this, it was obvious that this ratio or pattern is pleasing to the human eye and occurs frequently in nature. However, most of the examples frequently used to illustrate the Golden Ratio are man-made. It is difficult for me to believe that we are born believing such a ratio is beautiful and we were in no way conditioned to believe so. It is interesting how often the ratio appears in art and even nature, but I believe many of the most popular examples of the ratio are a bit of a stretch. When you’re looking specifically for something in everything around you, it’s hard to distinguish between when such a thing actually exists and when you are simply fabricating a connection.

5 comments:

Kyle Caffey said...

Interesting video. I agree that it seems like there must be a little conditioning as far as the appeal to the eye goes. I think it is quite possible that the golden rectangle appeals to us because it is a shape that we see often.

Brian M said...

I agree with what Kyle said. The golden rectangle is appealing because the rectangle is viewed in everyday life, almost unconsciously. I don't think that we are born with the inherent knowledge that things are or are not beautiful. Conditioning over a period of time makes us distinguish this.

emma said...

it sounds like advertisers and corporations and business people heard about this golden spiral being visually appealing, so everyone started putting it out there thinking they were gonna walk right on over to the bank and deposit that big fat check. so now, it's everywhere, not because we like it so much, but because a bunch of money hungry fools are trying to make us buy their products. but it's cool that it happens so frequently in nature and art, that's definitely interesting.

christo said...

i don't really see how we could be conditioned to think the golden ratio is beautiful. First of all, people have found beauty in things that contain the golden ratio before the golden ratio was even found. Though conditioning does have a little to do with what we think is beautiful (since the whole idea of beauty comes from appreciation -- which is greatly affected by the values you hold and the beliefs you have), in the end I think there are certain things that are just naturally beautiful to anyone. All humans have similar appreciations they are born with. Sure some of them are conditioned, but a lot of them not. Any hungry human will appreciate a large, tasty meal. And i think if innately have appreciation 'at all, we innately have the "knowledge" of the beauty of certain things.

Blackout said...

i wonder why is it called the "golden" ratio. I always think of something like the Golden Rule or a Gold Goose.It makes it seem perfect, though most things aren't.