I was checking out some other blogs here at blogiversity this morning and read an interesting post over on the psychology blog. It was just a short entry on the importance of the natural world to mental health, but it reminded me of a paper I read a couple years ago on physics, fractal patters, and human response to fractals. I plan to see if I can find the original paper somewhere on the net later today, but for now, I just posted a quick comment summarizing the study. You can read the post that inspired it as well as my summary at http://www.blogiversity.org/blogs/psychology/default.aspx.

Some Five Alive readers may remember that I took interest in how interdisciplinary efforts brought the identity of Mona Lisa to light. Similarly, I originally noticed this particular work on fractals in part because it also combined the efforts of disparate fields. It stemmed in part from scientists and art historians working together to find new ways of verifying the authenticity of works purported to be created by American artist Jackson Pollack. Pollack is known for his distinctive body of work in abstract painting. A method was developed to analyze the frequencies of fractals in the abstract paintings in order to compare known Pollack works to suspected impostor paintings. This lead to the development of a device that would create seemingly random patterns with splatters of paint that would, in reality, be carefully engineered to be composed of specific frequencies of fractal patterns. Paintings made by this machine  were used in later studies into human perception on eye-pleasing art. Art, engineering, and psychology experts mutually benefited from the collaboration of talent.


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