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Michelangelo likely used mathematics when painting the Creation of Adam

Date:
July 20, 2015
Source:
Wiley
Summary:
New research provides mathematical evidence that Michelangelo used the Golden Ratio of 1.6 when painting The Creation of Adam on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The Golden Ratio is found when you divide a line into two parts so that the longer part divided by the smaller part is equal to the whole length divided by the longer part.
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New research provides mathematical evidence that Michelangelo used the Golden Ratio of 1.6 when painting The Creation of Adam on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The Golden Ratio is found when you divide a line into two parts so that the longer part divided by the smaller part is equal to the whole length divided by the longer part.

The Golden Ratio has been linked with greater structural efficiency and has puzzled scientists for centuries due to its frequent occurrence in nature -- for example in snail shells and flower petals. The Golden Ratio can also be found in a variety of works by architects and designers, in famous musical compositions, and in the creations of many artists.

The findings suggest that the beauty and harmony found in the works of Michelangelo may not be based solely on his anatomical knowledge. He likely knew that anatomical structures incorporating the Golden Ratio offer greater structural efficiency and, therefore, he used it to enhance the aesthetic quality of his works.

"We believe that this discovery will bring a new dimension to the great work of Michelangelo," said Dr. Deivis de Campos, author of the Clinical Anatomy study.


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Journal Reference:

  1. Deivis De Campos, Tais Malysz, João Antonio Bonatto-Costa, Geraldo Pereira Jotz, Lino Pinto De Oliveira Junior, Andrea Oxley da Rocha. More than a neuroanatomical representation inThe Creation of Adamby Michelangelo Buonarroti, a representation of theGolden Ratio. Clinical Anatomy, 2015; DOI: 10.1002/ca.22580

Cite This Page:

Wiley. "Michelangelo likely used mathematics when painting the Creation of Adam." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 July 2015. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150720145255.htm>.
Wiley. (2015, July 20). Michelangelo likely used mathematics when painting the Creation of Adam. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 27, 2017 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150720145255.htm
Wiley. "Michelangelo likely used mathematics when painting the Creation of Adam." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150720145255.htm (accessed May 27, 2017).

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