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.