GoGeometry The Lute Player (1596) by Caravaggio and Golden Rectangles

Successive Golden Rectangles dividing a Golden Rectangle into squares (logarithmic spiral known as the golden spiral)

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571 - 1610) was an Italian artist active in Rome, Naples, Malta, and Sicily between 1592 and 1610. His paintings, which combine a realistic observation of the human state, both physical and emotional, with a dramatic use of lighting, had a formative influence on Baroque painting.

The Lute Player (1596)
The Lute Player is a composition by Caravaggio. It exists in three versions, one in the Wildenstein Collection, another in the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg and a third from Badminton House, Gloucestershire, which came to light in 2007.

The three versions show a boy with soft facial features and thick brown hair, accompanying himself on the lute as he sings a madrigal about love. As in the Uffizi Bacchus, the artist places a table-top in front of the figure. In the Wildenstein version the table is covered with a carpet and extended forwards to hold a tenor recorder, while the still life is replaced by a spinetta (a small keyboard instrument) and a caged songbird. Source: Wikipedia, The Lute Player (Caravaggio).

Golden rectangle
A golden rectangle is a rectangle whose side lengths are in the golden ratio, one-to-phi, that is, approximately 1:1.618. A distinctive feature of this shape is that when a square section is removed, the remainder is another golden rectangle, that is, with the same proportions as the first. Square removal can be repeated infinitely, which leads to an approximation of the golden or Fibonacci spiral.

Droste Effect
The Droste effect is a specific kind of recursive picture, one that in heraldry is termed mise en abyme. An image exhibiting the Droste effect depicts a smaller version of itself in a place where a similar picture would realistically be expected to appear. This smaller version then depicts an even smaller version of itself in the same place, and so on. Only in theory could this go on forever; practically, it continues only as long as the resolution of the picture allows, which is relatively short, since each iteration geometrically reduces the picture's size. It is a visual example of a strange loop, a self-referential system of instancing which is the cornerstone of fractal geometry. Source: Wikipedia, Droste Effect.


The Lute Player (1596) and Golden Rectangles, Droste Effect


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