— Rick Rubin, The Art of Creation
Many things we encounter every day hold hidden dimensions that largely go unseen and unrecognized. While many of us immediately recognize a sense of deep beauty and order in many aspects of nature and works of art and architecture, the actual mathematical ratios are not seen.
One example we see in nature is a pattern known as the golden ratio. We find this pattern repeatedly when we examine objects like galaxies, seashells, flower petals, hurricanes, and even the human face.
But these patterns are not limited to just nature. We also find them in great works of architecture, art, and music. The Parthenon, The Great Pyramids, and Beethoven's Fifth Symphony are well-known examples.
The first recorded mention of the concept of the golden ratio dates back to around 300 BC in Euclid's Elements, a prominent Greek work on mathematics and geometry. Although early mathematicians recognized the ratios, they did not name them.
It wasn't until much later, in the early 1500s, that mathematicians Leonardo da Vinci and Luca Pacioli called it the golden ratio. They called it "golden" because they believed it represented a beautiful and divinely inspired simplicity and order.
What makes the golden ratio so remarkable?
First, it surprises us with how often it shows up in nature. We see the pattern in the spiraling scales of a pine cone or the arrangement of seeds in a sunflower and in infinite ways throughout nature. It's believed that the golden ratio pattern is nature's efficient way of organizing things.
In architecture, the golden ratio is recognized for its aesthetic appeal. Architects incorporate it into their designs, believing it creates a sense of balance and harmony. When we look at a building designed around the golden ratio, it creates a feeling of perfect alignment and symmetry.
You might be surprised to learn that every image at SpaceB incorporates a golden ratio grid. I use the grid to lay out the placement of the text and objects. I also use the grid to influence the drawing's size and many other aspects.
I attempt to draw every object using simple lines and shapes. But sometimes, what I want to express is beyond my capabilities, so I will use a drawing or a picture from a third-party library.
Every design goes through multiple iterations until it feels right. My sense from feedback from many readers is that the designs can invoke a similar feeling.
Facilitating group interaction and impact
As we have started to use the SpaceB designs in more interactions and workshops with more people over the past year, we have noticed that the images seem to invoke a surprising level of activity, open-mindedness, and expanded discussion among the participants.
I've highlighted this testimonial from colleague Gwen Kinsey before, but I think restating it again here is helpful.
What I found curious was that the connection many in the workshop related to their telling was very personal and went well beyond the words in the quote. (a door opening of sorts)
We've received similar feedback from many others, so I've wondered if the SpaceB designs impact the level and nature of discussion and interaction in a group setting beyond what one might reasonably expect.
My curiosity led me to research what David Bohm might have said about using golden ratio-based visual design during dialogue.
While Bohm did not specifically mention the golden ratio concerning his ideas on dialogue, the fundamental principles of interconnectedness and harmony that both the golden ratio and dialogue encompass create a parallel that underscores the profound unity and interplay in the universe and within human interactions.
At the same time, we have been lucky to have two proficient facilitators assisting in guiding our workshops. John Ryskowski from the US and Wolfgang Fiebig from Germany have been significantly engaged in this task. Their expertise in facilitation and their presence further improve the workshop experience.
I hope you are as excited and intrigued as I am as we begin to experience and realize this work's impact and the possibilities it might open up.
If so, I invite you into an experience of profound connections between human design, your inner capacities, and the patterns of the natural world.
Through visually and inner-directed inspired dialogue, we tap into a deeper and more profound shared understanding and expand our perspective. Join us as we unlock the possibilities together.
— BillBill Fox, Founder at SpaceB, LeaderONE, and Forward Thinking Workplaces
P. S. The next opportunity to engage with the SpaceB designs in a group setting occurs in June at our two quarterly workshops. Learn more and sign up here. We are also available to conduct a workshop with your team or organization. Please get in touch with me by email at email@example.com, or feel free to schedule a call using Calendly.