Fractal Geometry in the Late Work of Frank Lloyd Wright: The Palmer House

  • Leonard K. Eaton


That Nature was Frank Lloyd Wright’s deity is well known, but recent scholarship has also stressed the importance of Wright’s feeling for geometry. Anthony Alofsin has pointed out the impact of Wright’s contact with the geometric forms of the Vienna Secession. Referring to Wright’s use of the rectilinear grid, Narciso Menocal writes that it “…was contingent on his conception of the universe as a geometric entity that architecture mirrors”. Whether or not Wright was aware of such concepts as the Golden Mean and the Fibonacci series is a moot point. Wright used nature as the basis of his geometrical abstraction. His objective was to conventionalize the geometry which he found in Nature, and his method was to adopt the abstract simplification which he found so well expressed in the Japanese print. Therefore, it is not too shocking perhaps that in this quest his work should foreshadow the new mathematics of nature first put forth by Benoit Mandelbrot: fractal geometry.


Equilateral Triangle Fractal Geometry Concrete Slab Sierpinski Gasket Talus Slope 
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A grant from the Graham Foundation supported the research in this chapter.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leonard K. Eaton
    • 1
  1. 1.University of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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