Too often, we dip our toes into the water when instead we need to be leaping off of the burning bridge.
The nature of a work of art is to be not a part, nor yet a copy of the real world, but a world in itself.
Because it’s a space that has been cleansed of other associations. It is itself, it’s coherent, it’s self-realized, it exists in its own right. Every work of art must be that; it must be a closed world. That is, you must be able to enter it and find it coherent and orderly, and be able to return to it to discover things you hadn’t found at first. But there is something cathedral-like about it: it’s a place where you can rest, contemplate, refuel and go out again knowing that it remains there for you. All art presents a sanctified space."
Fleeting moments in an infinite flux: artists and other windows on eternity
by Emily Ann Pothast
In the late 1880s, the French astronomer and artist Etienne Leopold Trouvelot created a series of photographs of electric sparks. Perfecting a technique pioneered by another scientist a few years earlier, Trouvelot generated his images without a camera, directly exposing photosensitive plates to brief bursts of electrical energy. The resulting snapshots reveal forking, infinitely self-similar patterns that resemble tree branches, rivers, vascular systems, coral, neurons, city maps, mountain ranges, microchips, mycorrhizal networks, galaxies, flow charts, family trees and feathers—basically everything in the universe whose structure is determined by growth, movement or the transfer of energy.
Trouvelot Figures (as they are called) do not begin to reveal the entire truth about the patterns they illuminate. As two-dimensional images, they can only capture fleeting moments in an infinite flux, yet they offer windows into eternity. Their fractal sinews whisper volumes about time, energy and movement; their interference patterns reveal multidimensional glimpses of infinite possibility. The paths traveled by electrical sparks adhere to rules so specific and recognizable as to seem built into the very order of the cosmos, yet in their constantly shifting, endlessly splintering movement they echo Heraclitus’ ancient admonition that change is the only certainty."