Nature, Fractals, and Jackson Pollock

Jackson Pollock, famous abstract painter, known alcoholic, and apparent creator of fractals 25 years before their determination.  Many observations can be made about Pollock and his work, investigations have been conducted as to whether or not fractals played a large role in his success. Fractal patterns can be found in nature, they are featured in river networks, coastlines, clouds, etc. Similar patterns can be found in several, but not all, of Pollock’s work. There is much argument in regards to this and many argue that no such patterns exist in his work. Others, like Richard P. Taylor, agree that the intriguing display of fractal patterns possibly led to Pollock’s growing popularity during the 1940s and early 1950s.  What draws my curiosity is not whether fractals appear in Pollock’s work, instead I wonder why he created them and how he did so.  This paper will discuss the Taylor’s research, the argument between those who agree and disagree with Taylor’s findings, fractals, and if Pollock’s fractals were created in his attempt to recreate patterns found in nature, his attempt to connect with nature, or whether he was attempting to emulate nature.

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4 thoughts on “Nature, Fractals, and Jackson Pollock”

  1. After reading it again I see the scatter and where I missed to define my claim.

    I am claiming that though we know fractals can be found in Pollock’s work we don’t know why he created them or how, was he trying to connect, emulate, or recreate patterns in nature. Was it all three or did he have no real reasoning behind his method.

    Thanks for the comment!

  2. Wouldn’t he have created fractals to display them in his work? Forgive me if I am reading this incorrectly, but wouldn’t this be equivalent to asking why Braque and Picasso pioneered cubism?

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