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Described by the 17th-century astronomer Johannes Kepler as a ‘precious jewel’, the so-called ‘golden ratio’ is an irrational number whose physical manifestation is prevalent in nature and has been employed by artists, architects and designers for its aesthetic allure. It has been argued, however, that the ratio’s occurrence in the natural world has been exaggerated, and that its ‘beauty’ can be chalked up to its pleasing simplicity. This brief animation explores the ratio through its most famous manifestation, the ‘golden rectangle’, whose very name begs the question whether some shapes are inherently more beautiful than others.
How the Hindu myth of Annapurna, goddess of food, connects sustenance with spirituality
Computing and artificial intelligence
Who, exactly, authored this AI-generated spin on Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo?
Peering into the eerie world of plankton reveals a variety of vital creatures
Biography and memoir
Meet the Liverbirds! The bittersweet tale of Liverpool’s all-female answer to the Beatles
Take in the sounds of silence via this unique performance of John Cage’s infamous piece
‘My people!’ A Trinidadian’s love letter to his island, just before its 1962 independence
A unique theatre performance explores what touch means in an age of lockdown
Ageing and death
How an end-of-life doula found her vocation as a companion for the dying
Artists can flourish after brain damage. What does this say about neurology and aesthetics?