A fractal is a natural phenomenon or a mathematical set that exhibits a repeating pattern that displays at every scale. If the replication is exactly the same at every scale, it is called a self-similar pattern. An example of this is the Menger Sponge. Fractals can also be nearly the same at different levels.
I look at something like the Menger Sponge and think to myself ‘that’s how they came up for the idea of Hellraiser’s Lemarchand’s box’. You know that rubiks cube that sends the gamer to hell when they crack the puzzle? 🙂
Seriously though, there is significant link with the mathematics and fractal art. One of my favourite mathematical artists, M.C Escher, was a genius with combining both sides of his brain for some tricky art. It is amazing what can be made by repeating the same pattern on different scales.
I like to think of fractal art as looking at a sand dune. From a distance, all sand dunes are unique and have a different look about them. When you look up close though, our artist mother nature, has made all sand dunes out of the same stuff. Many particles of sand if you will, just that they’ve been constructed slightly differently but it is still the same shape, the same pattern, but the final outcome is different. This could be said for many things in nature.
So think simple with sand dune analogy or be tricky and channel some Escher patterned work. This is definitely out there for the artist’s interpretation.