Phil Webster

Phil Webster Design
Scotts Valley, California, USA

All of my work stems from one core impulse: to celebrate the inherent beauty of mathematical forms. These forms appear all around us—in trees and crystals, in dunes and flowers, in ancient temples and modern skyscrapers. Rather than directly depict these outer manifestations, I explore the abstract forms underlying it all—polyhedra, fractals, tessellations, lattices. There is something sacred in the creation and viewing of these forms that allows me to meditate on the infinite patterns present in the deep structure of our world.

Since traveling to India in 2012, I have been particularly focused on blending traditional Islamic motifs with polyhedra and fractals. The results are distinctly Islamic in flavor but with a modern twist.

Diatoms I
Diatoms I
50 x 40 cm
Digital print

In previous years I have shown several works based on my method for creating Fractal Islamic Patterns. All of these had 8- or 10-fold symmetry; this is the first with 12-fold symmetry. This pattern has global and local 12-fold rotational symmetry around each rosette. Rosette centers occupy the nodes of 12 fractal quaternary trees emanating from the center and then pruned at the sector boundaries.

This piece varies from previous works in two ways. Due to how successive layers are connected, they naturally alternate between the dark and light colors. Also, instead of one pattern in its entirety, parts of two copies at different scales are shown in the corners. The result reminded me of creatures on a microscope slide, hence the title.