Fractal Painting. By Nathan Garletts. Fractals can be found in paintings for a few different reasons. Some are due to an unconscious use of fractal components such as finding self-similarity, or a bifurcation process. Others were done on purpose to mimic chaotic shapes. Egyptian Temple Column.
By Nathan Garletts
In the 1940’s Jackson Pollock created abstract art by dripping paint from a can onto vast canvasses across his floor. His art is considered to be a fractal, reflecting the fingerprint nature. Over the years Jackson Pollock refined his dripping technique. As time went on the fractal dimensions of his artwork slowly increased. In his early stages the dimension was close to one and as he got older it went all the way up to about 1.72. This is due to the fact that later on he covered a higher percentage of the canvas’s surface, and used more layers.
This piece of art was done by Pollock in his early stage, somewhere from 1942-1944. Notice how it is much less dense than the previous one, covering less of the canvas. Also note that there are fewer layers. If you calculated the fractal dimension of this it would be much lower than t he previous image.
All the artists we have looked at so far used fractals in an unconscious way, at the beginning of the new century a more conscious use of fractal geometry came about. It can be used to create, excitement, and chaos in a picture, mimic nature, or create complex patterns.