Molly K. Patton

Fractal 2017

Metallic Print, Acrylic

20 x 30cm




Upon closer inspection, aspects of how nature behaves, once considered random or chaotic,


have been found to possess hidden degrees of regularity known as: fractal patterns. These


self-replicating structures allow us to quantitatively study phenomena that previously, were


too convoluted to comprehend. Fractal geometries have been observed on a vast range of


scales, from the smallest snowflake, to the largest cosmological formation and provide a novel


perspective from which we might understand evolution.


The most obvious example of a fractal pattern is the snowflake. During its descent through


the atmosphere, the environmental conditions are such that the ice crystals form beautiful


needle-like structures that repeat the same pattern over and over.


In addition to snowflakes, fractal patterns have been identified in the fossil remains of small


organisms long since extinct which have been associated with similar structures of marine


organisms alive today. Hence, these fossilised fractals and their relationship with life today,


may provide insight into evolution and how life emerges on increasing scales; from


fundamental particles such as water, to small organisms and even the larger cosmos.