Art and Science
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Today, art and science are often defined in opposition to each other: one involves the creation of individual aesthetic objects, and the other the discovery of general laws of nature. Throughout human history, however, the boundaries have been less clearly drawn: knowledge and artifacts have often issued from the same source, the head and hands of the artisan. And artists and scientists have always been linked, on a fundamental level, by their reliance on creative thinking.
Art and Science is the only book to survey the vital relationship between these two fields of endeavor in its full scope, from prehistory to the present day. Individual chapters explore how science has shaped architecture in every culture and civilization; how mathematical principles and materials science have underpinned the decorative arts; how the psychology of perception has spurred the development of painting; how graphic design and illustration have evolved in tandem with methods of scientific research; and how breakthroughs in the physical sciences have transformed the performing arts. Some 265 illustrations, ranging from masterworks by Dürer and Leonardo to the dazzling vistas revealed by fractal geometry, complement the wide-ranging text.
This new edition of Art and Science has been updated to cover the ongoing convergence of art and technology in the digital age, a convergence that has led to the emergence of a new type of creator, the “cultural explorer” whose hybrid artworks defy all traditional categorization. It will make thought-provoking reading for students and teachers, workers in creative and technical fields, and anyone who is curious about the history of human achievement.
Figurines representing healers carrying medicine bags, dolls, herbs and utensils reveal the deep link between medicine and artistic representation. Museum für Völkerkunde, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin Ancestral know-how may be of use in a number of other areas, not the least of which are agriculture and environmental practices. Ironically, hi-tech computer analysis is now employed to record whatever remains of this body of knowledge. Célèbes, Max Ernst, 1921 The contribution of African art to
mentor, wrote: “From stones to crystals, from crystals to metals, from these to plants, from plants to brutes, and from brutes to man, we have seen the form of organization ascend, and with this the powers and propensities of the creatures have become more various, till at length they have all united in the human frame.” Detail of the AIDS virus model Decorative patterns resemble natural shapes; most forms in nature, however, possess a sophistication that defies copying by scientists or
treatise. Instead, he left hundreds of notes and sketches—in mirror-writing since he was left-handed—many of which were found three hundred years later. They thus had a limited impact on the immediate course of science. Leonardo immensely enriched the fields of ballistics and engineering, and conducted pioneering work in anatomy that covered embryology and physiology, as well as the study of expression and movement. Few of his inventions found practical application and only a small number of
would be used to reproduce paintings. The French Baron Lejeune, who was stationed nearby, brought the method back to France and suggested using it in promoting Napoleon’s campaigns. Lithographic self-portraits, René Laennec, nineteenth century The surface and texture of a lithographic print can closely approximate that of paint itself: the graininess comes through almost as if it were skin. These self-portraits were made by René Laennec, the French physician who invented the stethoscope; he
in combining waves of light with waves of sound. Physicists today accept the paradox that light can take many forms, behaving sometimes as particles, sometimes as waves. Meanwhile, artists have turned light into a symbol of the performing arts. Light Mill, computer-generated hologram, Dieter Jung, 1987 Laser light is split into a reference beam and an object beam; the two beams form an interference pattern whose record is called a hologram. Holography is a medium that establishes a dynamic