Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Meaning of the Name "Liquid Triangle"

Liquid Triangle, based on the Golden Triangle
The name "Liquid Triangle" was born in 1994 during my Calculus 1 class at the University of Illinois.  I was sitting next to a friend who would later become my husband trying to decipher the hieroglyphics that our teacher was scribbling on the chalkboard.  Our professor wrote something that looked like "liquid triangle" on the board.  We didn't know what she was talking about, but we thought it would be a really cool name for a band.  Since neither of us played an instrument anymore, we thought - how about an architecture firm!  More than fifteen years later, that dream is still a work in progress, but we're getting closer.  My husband is no longer an architect; in fact he never practiced as one after getting his MBA; and I am in the process of a career transition that will take me to places yet unknown.  But we are both naturally inspired and we came upon by accident, or fate, a name that has great meaning for us. 

Bruce Rawles describes a "sacred geometry" that permeates the universe as geometric templates that reveal the nature of forms in the world.  These forms he says are, under it all, interconnected and inseparable.  The Golden Ratio, or the Fibonnaci ratio, (1.618 to infinity) is the ratio of growth where the ratio of the larger portion to the smaller portion is the same through multiple generations. This pattern of growth is seen as the pattern for reproduction in much of nature. 
  • how limbs branch on trees
  • how leaves radiate from a stem
  • the arrangement of a pine cone
  • sunflower and artichoke florets
  • the family tree of the honeybees
I learned about the Golden Rectangle in architecture classes and studied how this geometry was the basis for much of early Greek and Roman architecture.  In fact, one of my masters design projects was a spirituality center, in which the progression to the sacred space followed the spiral that emerges from this geometry.  I have recently come across its relative, the Golden Triangle, from which a spiral emerges.  To me, this is the perfect representation of a liquid triangle:  growth in nature, introducing the fluid and organic to the built environment.

As my calculus classes can attest, I am not a mathematician, but I find the underlying geometries of growth and reproduction in nature to be inspiring.


Sacred Geometry by Bruce Rawles

1 comment:

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