Monthly Archives: November 2010

Art Nouveau in Architecture

Art Nouveau, defined as the first movement that led to architectural art, started around the 1890’s.  Flowing, organic lines, fluent structures, references to nature and natural formations are a signature of art nouveau works of art & craft.

Architectural art such as floral decoration on facades, balcony decorations, railings are significant in art nouveau architectural examples.

Sagrada Familia by Gaudi (still being built).

by Gaudi

“Valida Paşa Yalısı” is a beautiful example of such architecture.Build by D’Aronco in 1902, the building is now abandoned.

Art Deco in Bioshock




Bioshock takes place in the 60’s, in an alternate reality where the payer gets to explore the underwater city Rapture. Questions of values and morality arise.

“Rapture was envisioned by the Randian business magnate Andrew Ryan, who wanted to create a laissez-faire state to escape increasingly oppressive political, economic, and religious authority on land. The city was secretly built in 1946 on a mid-Atlantic seabed, utilizing submarine volcanoes to provide geothermal power.[37] Scientific progress flourished in Rapture, leading to rapid developments in engineering and biotechnology thanks in part to the brilliant scientists that Ryan brought to the city. One such advancement was ADAM, stem cellsharvested from a previously unknown species of sea slug, which were discovered by Dr. Bridgette Tenenbaum to have the ability to regenerate damaged tissue and rewrite the human genome. Tenenbaum joined with businessman and mobster Frank Fontaine to create the plasmid industry, which offered superhuman physical enhancements to its customers. Tenenbaum found that ADAM could be mass-produced by implanting the slugs in the stomachs of young girls (“Little Sisters”), taken from orphanages founded by Fontaine.

As time passed, the gap between rich and poor increased. Frank Fontaine established charity organizations to support the underclass. His motives were far from altruistic; his ultimate goal was to use his charity organizations to manipulate the underclass. He also established a smuggling operation to supply citizens with forbidden items from the surface, such as religious material. These, along with his control of the plasmid industry, made him immensely powerful. He tried to overthrow Ryan, but the revolt was violently crushed and Fontaine was reportedly killed. Ryan seized control of Fontaine’s plasmid business. Within a few months, a new figure named Atlas rose as the leader of the disgruntled lower class. On New Year’s Eve of 1959, Atlas and his ADAM-infused followers began a new revolt against Ryan that spread throughout Rapture.[38] Ryan in turn began splicing his own forces, and his paranoia had reached such a level he was hanging dozens of people, mostly innocent, in Rapture’s main square. In order to solve ADAM shortages, the Little Sisters were mentally conditioned to wander the city and extract ADAM from the dead, recycling it into raw ADAM in their stomachs after swallowing it. “Big Daddies”, enhanced and mentally sterilized humans in armored diving suits, were created by Dr. Suchong, the scientist behind many plasmids, to protect the Little Sisters in their work.[34]

A drawback of ADAM is that a user must take regular infusions or suffer mental and physical degeneration. As the war disrupted production and supply, every ADAM user in the city eventually went violently insane. By the time the player arrives, only a handful of non-mutated humans survive in barricaded hideouts.[39](from HERE)


Heavily decorated city of Rapture is the perfect setting for the dystopian story the game presents. Long tunnels opening up to great halls, tall buildings, big windows, gigantic sculptures representing the power and the authority and the cameras (alternate reality – tthe game’s universe has advanced technology but the visual style of such devices are art-deco, art-nouveau and somewhat steampunk) that follow wherever the player goes and the monitors where the villain speaks to the player and taunt/inform/tease make up for a great dystopian athmosphere.

The Environment has it’s own narrative here, knocked over vending machines tell of vandalism and riots, looting. Writings in blood show of violent ends, cracked glass underwater tunnels tell of fights/control.

The interactive props like casettes, journals and notebooks further delve into the story for interested parties.

narrative is enhanced by the architecture, the player

Golden Ratio and Layout









Golden ratio is traced back to ancient greece, to Pythagorean schools of thought and mathematics just like Euclidean geometry. Philosphers and mathematicians, men of natural sciences has observed this ratio in natural occurances and formations so often that the broke it down and used it in their own assemblies. The ratio is still being used in many disciplines in many ways.

“Some of the greatest mathematical minds of all ages, from Pythagoras and Euclid in ancient Greece, through the medieval Italian mathematician Leonardo of Pisa and the Renaissance astronomer Johannes Kepler, to present-day scientific figures such as Oxford physicist Roger Penrose, have spent endless hours over this simple ratio and its properties. But the fascination with the Golden Ratio is not confined just to mathematicians. Biologists, artists, musicians, historians, architects, psychologists, and even mystics have pondered and debated the basis of its ubiquity and appeal. In fact, it is probably fair to say that the Golden Ratio has inspired thinkers of all disciplines like no other number in the history of mathematics”


Golden ratio has been used in visual arts for ages; a golden rectangle is, a square and a rectangle which has a square and a rectangle, which has a square and a…recursive. It is the projection of the seashell spiral on a rectangle bounding box. It is used in architecture including Parthenon, medieval book designs according to Jan Tschichold, painting and sculpture and industrial design and music.









The Sacrament of the Last Supper by Dali, uses the golden rectangle extensively. Even the canvas is sized on 16:10 ratio.

…and here’s phi, the golden ratio equation. which is also the new widescreen format, 16:10 and 16:9.

math fun


Found this sketch of Albrecht Duerer on Citrinitas and I had to do it. It was obvious that there was some trigonemetry involved, especially in the left hand side. The one with the circles look like a sine wave, oscillating on the vertical axis. from what I gather,

-each step the cos(angle) gets incremented.

-circle’s horizontal positions are cos(anle).

-since cos(x) goes from -1 to 1, we get the wave plotted.

for(var j:Number = 0;j<=600;j++){

var dot:Sprite = new Sprite();,0×000000,1);,0,4);



addChild(dot); angle+=   j/20; trace(600-j);



Above is the AS3.0 code of the algorithm. Also, Flash you need to convert degrees to radians.