As artists are renowned for being free spirited individuals extracting inspiration from the whimsical origins and vast cultures of the world. Words such as geometry, formulation and coordination are not generally affiliated with their design process. However a good number of design theories are based on mathematical theory and can be traced to specific formulas, sequences and equations proving there is a strong link between numeracy and design. (Design Shack, 2014)
In the world of art, architecture, and design, the golden ratio has earned a tremendous reputation. Greats like Le Corbusier and Salvador Dalí have used the number in their work. The Parthenon, the Pyramids at Giza, the paintings of Michelangelo, the Mona Lisa, even the apple logo are all said to incorporate it. This frequently used methodology reflects the concept of having two objects (or a single object that can be split into two objects, like the golden rectangle), and if, after you do the math above, you get the number 1.6180, it’s usually accepted that those two objects fall within the golden ratio.
The Last Supper | Di Vinci
For centuries the adoption of numeracy foundations have been used to achieve great beauty and balance within the design world;
“Without mathematics there is no art,” said Luca Pacioli, a contemporary of Da Vinci.” (Golden Number, 2014)
From classic art to jewellery design, the fusion between mathematical attributes, art and jewellery is continuously evolving. Proving designers have more mathematical problems than just business calculations and time-keeping. We observe how this bizarre concoction is continuing to inspire, develop and push boundaries creating new ideologies.
When considering “geometry” a long catalogue of monotonous mathematic and science equations spring to mind. However, the use of geometry within the jewellery industry is one equation with a more exciting outcome. As the industry continuously experiments and evolves, we explore the relationship between mathematics and design.
Shana Kroiz | 2011
Shana Kroiz a Baltimore based acclaimed jewellery designer and artist faces a variety of math problems on a daily basis. Producing her collection from rich commodities such as rose gold, platinum vermeil, 18k gold, silver and diamonds. Her designs encompass easy to wear, lightweight pieces constructed by means of various techniques and diverse materials from casting and fabrication to electroforming.
She uses the art of calculation, to create her visual vocabulary with a hint of art nouveau. Whether its measuring items, re-sizing products or using geometry to construct three-dimensional forms out of sheet metal, the relationship between mathematics and design is apparent in Kroizs range of whimsical designs. (Math For Grown Ups, 2011).
The essential components to begin the design process according to Kroiz is noting the sizes and weights of each piece, ensuring its not too heavy for the wearer. Scoring and bending metal is also fundamental, the requirement to calculate the angle of the score lines is imperative in order to attain the correct angle out of the bending sheet. The Maryland based designer states she frequently has calculators, dividers and scales at hand to assist with her daily motions. Amplifying the importance of her required daily calculations;
“Without math, it is almost impossible to do precision work.” (Maths For Grownups, 2014)
Sarah Loertscher | 2015
Whilst geometry in jewellery may appear purposely chaotic and free, Washington based designer Sarah Loertscher uses a form carefully constructed lines and angles to create each individual masterpiece. Using a spectrum of shapes from hexagons to pyramids, Loertschers use of devine layering resemble that of a frenzied scientist. The American designer outlines her standard methodology;
“My work is an exploration of these structural forms – building up a single line or shape into a dense mass, or distilling forms into their skeletal supports.” (Rockin That Gem, 2013)
Her strategy includes bending, soldering and scoring silver to create, clean minimalist lines and angles, with some of her more complex designs possessing hundreds of scores. Loertschers range of minimal and organic forms are demure yet extremely striking, highlighting her creative designs are an outcome of her calculations.(Seattle Mag, 2011)
Zhenwei Chu (Carisa) is a Chinese contemporary jewellery designer and sculptor, describing her brand in 3 words as;
“Unique, Fresh, Geometry”
Defining her inspiration as the emotional relationship between families and ecologic food chain influences. The Chinese designer, uses a combination of traditional metal craft and new techniques of mix-media materials to construct her unique designs. Starting her design style as geometric artwork, its apparent Chu conducts avid research, analysation and development techniques to form her narrative collection.
Established by product designer Shimon Ezekiel, hosts a fascinating collection of perspex pieces with a geometrical flair. With an enhanced focus of redefining an image to it’s building blocks, the product designer fuses architectural concepts within his designs and uses flat sheets of material with a of folding or bending technique to form 3D shapes. Each piece is then brought to life with the help of a second material, mahogany wood or a gemstone. With Ezekiels background in product design and use of structural ideologies, the designer describes his inspiration sources as;
“Art, Sound, Simple Shapes, Architecture”
Mariko Sumioka | 2015
As the world of fashion and architecture, is one with multiple similarities and a drive for the same end result. The compulsory amalgamation between mathematical principals and architectural design is often referred to as a concrete expression of mathematical ideas. Using Japanese-inspired housing as a source for inspiration, jewellery designer Mariko Sumioka explores this fused concept with her narrative jewellery collection, encouraging individuals to find their own connection through the wear of each piece.
Paying homage to the instrumental symbol of possession, personal comforts and the cleanliness of a Japanese home. Sumioka theoretical research transforms this tradition into visual splendour via her jewellery collection, the Japanese designer confirms her architectural fascination;
“I am inspired by Japanese unique architectural characteristics:natural materials and colours, dark and bright contrasts, linear forms, geometric shapes and spaces.” (Rocking That Gem, 2013)
Although the role of an artist is not generally affiliated with crunching numbers over a textbook, there is a established relationship between design and mathematics. When considering the foundation of design, whether in the format of canvas painting, architecture, fashion or jewellery- mathematics is a vital part of the design process and crucial for successful progression.
References Design shack (2014) Math for Designers: It’s a Numbers Game [Online] Available at http://Http://designshack.net/articles/business-articles/math-for-designers-its-a-numbers-game/ [Accessed 13/11/15] Golden Number (2014) Golden Ratio in Art Composition and Design [Online] Available at http://Http://www.goldennumber.net/art-composition-design/ [Accessed 13/11/15] Math For Grown Ups (2011) Math at Work Monday: Shana the jewelry designer JUNE 6, 2011 By LAURA 5 COMMENTS Math at Work Monday: Ilisa the Communications and Outreach Events Coordinator [Online] Available at http://Http://mathforgrownups.com/math-at-work-monday-shana-the-jewelry-designer/ [Accessed 12/11/15] Rockin That Gem (2013) The Geometreic Perspective in Jewllery [Online] Available at http://Http://www.rockinthatgem.com/2013/08/the-geometric-perspective-in-jewellery.html [Accessed 13/11/15] Seattle Mag (2011) Designers to Watch: 2011 Edition [Online] Available at http://Http://www.seattlemag.com/article/lifestyle/shopping-and-style/designers-watch-2011-edition [Accessed 11/11/15]
Design shack (2014) Math for Designers: It’s a Numbers Game [Online] Available at http://Http://designshack.net/articles/business-articles/math-for-designers-its-a-numbers-game/ [Accessed 13/11/15]
Golden Number (2014) Golden Ratio in Art Composition and Design [Online] Available at http://Http://www.goldennumber.net/art-composition-design/ [Accessed 13/11/15]
Math For Grown Ups (2011) Math at Work Monday: Shana the jewelry designer
JUNE 6, 2011 By LAURA 5 COMMENTS
Math at Work Monday: Ilisa the Communications and Outreach Events Coordinator [Online] Available at http://Http://mathforgrownups.com/math-at-work-monday-shana-the-jewelry-designer/ [Accessed 12/11/15]
Rockin That Gem (2013) The Geometreic Perspective in Jewllery [Online] Available at http://Http://www.rockinthatgem.com/2013/08/the-geometric-perspective-in-jewellery.html [Accessed 13/11/15]
Seattle Mag (2011) Designers to Watch: 2011 Edition [Online] Available at http://Http://www.seattlemag.com/article/lifestyle/shopping-and-style/designers-watch-2011-edition [Accessed 11/11/15]