Sectio Aurea

Completion: 2016

Location: Hennepin County Library, Brooklyn Park, MN

DescriptionSectio Aurea features ‘folded’ ceramic steel panels to create a lenticular effect that changes with the viewer’s movement. integrated with the soffit-wall architecture, the work would create an experience of discovery and surprise for viewers as they see the work from both outside and inside the library building.

As artists, we took our inspiration from the golden spiral, a form derived from the golden section that underlies patterns and systems in the universe, including the natural world, art, architecture, design, and aesthetics. Appropriate to a library setting, even modern printing was deeply shaped by this principle. For example, the proportions of the typical book follow the proportions of the golden section.

The movement of the viewer becomes part of the experience of the artwork. each wall shifts between two colorful, vibrant compositions. From one angle, viewers see a composition of golden spiral imagery relevant to local natural, cultural, and industrial history, including potato blooms, local agricultural products, indigenous plants, snail shells, pine cones, Mississippi river eddy currents, snowflakes, Dakota and Liberian traditional patterns, biomedical imaging and research. From another angle, viewers see golden spiral imagery related to broader world culture, global phenomenon, and the larger universe. these include human DNA, fingerprints, ancient fossils, weather patterns, spiraling galaxies, and world art and architecture.

This dynamic panoramic mural creates an interactive artwork, which tells the story of world culture and local geography through the lens of math and science. As viewers of all ages move by these walls, they see a continually changing composition that shifts between the two images in a moving gradient where spiraling forms interlace and merge into one another. this juxtaposition highlights the underlying presence of the golden spiral in all things. Sectio Aurea poetically connects the community to the larger world and universe beyond. 

Architect: METALAB