Saturday, March 21, 2009

Sacred Geometry

Welcome students and visitors of Sacred Geometry!

I have setup this page to promote the class before it begins on Thursday March 26th, but mostly as a during-class dialog between the students, visitors and I. Therefore, the tone here is addressed to the students, as if the first class has already happenned. You will still be able to get a sense of what the class will cover though, at least during its introduction. This blog is made so that we can communicate to each other and share ideas about the class, comments, questions and projects. I am just learning about this blogging thing so I'm going to be experimenting a bit...
I am imagining that you have been to the first class, and so by now you should have a basic idea of the overall definition of Sacred Geometry we are working with. We are talking about a field of study which is very wide-encompassing, covering areas of art, the sciences and humanities. It is also a field which explores forms, patterns and symbols that are very timeless, and reocuring throughout the man-made and natural world across many different geographic locations.

We talked about Sacred Geometry being multi layered in that it has a technical layer, a practical layer, and a metaphorical layer.

The technical layer involves the geometric, mathematical, physical, and scientific principles and laws that surround the many forms involved with Sacred Geometry. It also involves their construction, analysis, calculations, etc.

The practical layer is related to the application of some these principles, whether it is in the man-made world: architecture, art, music; or whether it is as seen in the natural world in the form of biological structures, geographic formations, the atomic level, the astronomical universe, the human mind, etc.

The metaphorical layer involves the meanings, symbols, relations and concepts associated with the specific forms of Sacred Geometry. This is the layer that engages the field beyond the physical studies, onto the conceptual aspects of art, philosophy, religion, spirituality, mysticism, and many other transcendental practices.

Even though we will explore and discuss all of these topics, our class will place a lot of focus on the technical layer, since we are working on learning how to construct many of these geometric forms using only a compass and a straightedge, mostly for artistic purposes. We are looking at a variety of practical constructions and methods used since antiquity for generating these forms and graphical elements. I have been inspired and informed by the related work of artists and thinkers such as Leonardo Da Vinci and Albretch Durer, and more recently by M.C. Escher, Gaudi, Joseph Beuys, and many others.
In this first class, the constructions covered are the very basic building blocks first: bisecting a line, bisecting an angle, proyecting a distance, dividing the circle, etc. We are also covering some basic, more exciting and ornamental constructions, such as Vesica Piscis, the Flower of Life and the Torus. Along the line, students will have learned more complex constructions, such as regular polygons, Phyllotaxic matrices, tessellation, the golden rectangle and spiral, and some fractal designs.