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Blog

Nature’s Patterns Around Us

From organic to physical to auditory, there are patterns everywhere.  Our exhibit explores many of these patterns.  A great article in the Smithsonian explores a well respected book called Patterns in Nature and an interview with its author, Philip Ball.  Our newest exhibition is based on the same concepts in this book.

Theo_Jansen_Strandbeest

Artist Theo Jansen applies physics to his “Strandbeest” creations that walk on wind across beaches.  These nearly living creatures are carefully designed structures of patterns.  Watch and be amazed!

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Many things in nature have patterns.  Using a magnifying glass or just a loop of string to frame and focus, look closely at leaves for patterns.  There are even microscopic pattern structures in the crystallized salt of tears.

zebras

Does a zebra’s skin match the pattern in its stripes?  Does a cheetah’s skin match the pattern in its spots?  Learn what determines whether an animal’s skin color matches the patterns in its hair or fur.

Are you intrigued by nature’s patterns and want a deeper dive into the math behind the patterns in easy to understand language?

For a list of some of the patterns in nature and beautiful images illustrating each, check out Patterns Found in Nature.

Check out The Mathematics of Nature’s Patterns for the math underneath the beauty of patterns.

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