Monday, March 7, 2011

The Straight and Narrow

But, if truth is the correspondence between appearance and reality, then there are some glaring inconsistencies in this system. Straight lines are strikingly absent from nature. If you take a walk in the woods, it is apparent that there is virtually nothing that is ruler straight. Instead, all naturally occurring forms are curved and arabesque. Rocks, bushes, mountains, rivers, gullies, branches, and leavers all follow an organic outline that does not contain a single perfect straight line. Only tree trunks and the perpendicular alignment of he human form standing upright upon the earth offer a commonly seen vertical that approximates a plumb line. Despite this direct evidence of our senses, we continue to connect everything with straight lines. The nineteenth-century Romantic artist Eugene Delacroix once speculated, "It would be worthy to investigate whether straight lines exist only in our brains"

-Leonard Shlain, Art and Physics 

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