Thirteen / Fibonacci Series / Sacred Geometry / Golden Ratio
I’m convinced that we all have numbers that hold significance in our lives.
For me one such number is 13.
Perhaps I’ve always resonated with it because it’s the date that I was born on?
Perhaps it’s that in the culture I live in many are superstitious and associate it with being unlucky, and therefore I’ve found there’s more spaciousness for me to like it so much? (Strange reasoning, I know!)
Perhaps it’s that I continue to find meaning in its connection to sacred geometry, beauty and the harmonies of life?
All of the above probably contribute partially to my liking for the number thirteen, but of those reasons, it’s the last one that I can sink my teeth in.
Aesthetics and beauty are topics that captivate me.
While I don’t take an academic approach to these topics (or any topic really), on a book easel in my studio for easy reference and inspiration are two related books:
1- Sacred Geometry: Philosphy and Practice by Robert Lawlor
2- The Power of Limits: Proportional Harmonies in Nature, Art & Architecture by György Doczi
They are both full of images, diagrams and examples of how geometry - numbers, shapes and proportion - underlies the structure of the universe. They illustrate how patterns of order and beauty are found around us.
Central to the conversation is the ‘golden ratio.’ It’s been written about by the ancient Greeks, Renaissance artists, astronomers, and modern science confirms it. The golden ratio is 1.61803399 and is represented by the Greek number phi.
Head to one of many books on the subject or online to get a full description. But from reading about the golden ratio/phi, we learn that:
it appears in the proportions of the human body and many other animals, plants (pinecones are a personal favorite), DNA, the solar system, art and architecture, music…snowflakes (they fit in here somewhere!)
it can be derived through mathematics, geometry, and a numerical series discovered by Leonardo Fibonacci.
This numerical series is a particular favorite of mine. To me it’s a playful entryway to designing a piece, to making decisions, to having a structure from which to depart.
It starts with 0 and 1, and each new number in the sequence is the sum of the two before it.
0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, 233, 377 …
What’s its relationship to the golden ratio? It’s that the ratio of each successive pair of numbers approximates phi. (5 divided by 3 is 1.666…, 8 divided by 5 is 1.6, 13 divided by 8 is 1.625 and so on.)
Learning about how numbers and proportions create a baseline of harmonies in the world around me has been a fascination. Looking at their visual representations or actualizations never ceases to inspire.
If you head to google and search ‘sacred geometry’ and look at the images, I think you’ll notice what I mean. I’ve clearly employed or referenced in my jewelry some of these universal patterns.
How does math show up in your life? I’d love to hear, so please leave a comment below or email me!