Fractal Art

Non-Fiction - Art/Photography
138 Pages
Reviewed on 01/06/2021
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite

A new category in digital art emerges. Jack Cleveland introduces us to his computer graphics-generated art in Fractals. These are art forms that are geometric representations of specialized mathematical formulas, of which a great popular example is a Fibonacci Sequence. Similarly, Cleveland’s collection of fractal art reflects and illuminates structures and patterns found in nature, including the pattern movement of the stock market. His artworks such as “Bluefire,” “Birds of a Feather,” and “Keys” are among the examples of manipulated abstract mathematical equations. They are repeated recursively to create distinct abstract patterns under Cleveland’s artistic license. They are reflections of his keen interest in mathematics and earth science. The beauty of his work lies at the intersection of generative art and computer art in set parameters.

Before the advent of computers, scientists had been studying fractals for hundreds of years. As Benoit Mandelbrot’s discoveries popularized fractal geometry, explorers and artists like Cleveland created shapes that are otherworldly yet visually arresting. His collection of art in Fractals is the product of diverse calculation formulas and coloring algorithms where he takes control. Cleveland’s work can be classified as a new form of abstract art since they represent objective realities through layers of elements that achieve striking effects. You can say that fractal art is unique, but it begs the bigger question of what makes it unique compared to other art forms. As a fractal artist, Cleveland demonstrates how it can be unique, for it is the only medium that explores fractal structures through digital and classical aesthetics. Browse through this collection and experience its mesmerizing effect.

K.C. Finn

Fractals is a work of non-fiction focusing on art, digital graphics, mathematics, and nature and was created by author and artist Jack Cleveland. As the title suggests, the work focuses on the visual phenomenon of fractals, which are repeating patterns that we find in many places in the natural world that have a fascinating mathematical sequence to them. The work delves into many different iterations of these patterns, and author Jack Cleveland utilizes computers and digital graphics to do them true justice and portray their accuracy. There is also a brief introduction to the discovery and nature of fractals as well as some supplementary information about the artist and his process.

Jack Cleveland has crafted a highly accessible and enjoyable art book which fans of digital artistry and mathematicians alike will appreciate. As a fan of fractals and their presence in nature, it was really interesting to see these patterns explored and beautifully presented in a new format. One of my personal favorites was Lifesprings because of its vibrancy and intricacies, and the color choices and design of each page bring a different mood and atmosphere to each experience. They are the sort of images that one could stare at for hours due to the continuing patterns and tiny details noticeable everywhere. This also adds to the value of the work as it becomes a piece that you can return to time and again to enjoy. Overall, I would certainly recommend Fractals to art, nature, and science fans alike.

Jamie Michele

Fractals: Fractal Art by Jack Cleveland is a book of the author's personal work as an algorist, which he delivers in full color with vivid detail. The book begins with an introduction to this new media art form and its technique, which employs the use of mathematical algorithms to formulate vibrant, abstract imagery that is mostly free from the boundaries of more traditional art forms. While he lived, the late artist Cleveland created dozens of pieces that vary in size, theme, and complexity, balancing mathematical application and the beauty of fractals with the imagination of the artist and his vision. The book contains work such as Bluestar, an ethereal blue and green six-prong star comprised of spherical, slightly bowed limbs that are perfectly shadowed, making the piece appear almost three dimensional, its coloring absolutely luminous. Similar standout work that harnesses the smooth perfection of multiple spheres are Cleveland's Lydia & The Octopus and Spherefield.

Jack Cleveland's fractal collection allows those who may be new to this artform the opportunity to immerse themselves in a diverse number of images with Fractals. Art is highly subjective and each piece in any medium used will evoke a different reaction from almost all who view it. For me, it was the coloring that really stood out, particularly the metallics that are pushed forward in a sheen that is difficult to transfer from computer screen to paper, let alone still look as commanding as ever. My personal favorite is Stargazer and its endless spiral of crimson and gold. The animalistic Neurosis, a network of contours reminiscent of a zebra-peacock hybrid, is a piece that I would be proud to hang above a mantle and could stare at it for hours. Overall, this is an excellent compilation that allows the beautiful legacy of art created by Jack Cleveland to outlive all of us. Highly recommended.