Geometry In Native American Art

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Abstract: This paper is a report on the findings of the geometry in Native American art. Many Native American tribes have mastered the art of weaving baskets, blankets, and pottery. All in which their inspiration is taken from geometric shapes and symmetries. One very important element in the creation of the geometric patterns in their art, are the numbers four and three. Many tribes consider the number four as showing completeness, thus translating it into their art. Changing times also demand change in designs and learning new forms of art. Introduction Art, What is art? To many people art is a way to express creativity. To others art is a way to visualize emotions. Nonetheless, art can be expressed in many different forms such as music,…show more content…
Depending on the tribe and their location, the materials, technique, shape, and characteristic patterns used in the baskets varied. Native Americans from California are known to have the most interesting and beautiful patterns (Parr, 2002). In Figure 1 we have a twined basket made by tribes in the California area. This Californian basket has a circular design to it separating the basket into three sections. The pattern in the middle of the basket has a lot of triangular shapes giving the basket a more symmetrical appearance. Figure 2 is another basket created from tribes in California. This basket has a more spiral design to it and it also has that same use of triangles within the design. There is no doubt that many if not all neighboring tribes in California shared their design ideas (Parr,…show more content…
Some tribes excelled more than others in specific arts due to their intricate geometrical designs. Basket weaving, pottery, and rugs were not the only arts our Native people were a fond of creating. They would also create beautiful geometric designs in clothes, shoes, and jewelry. Tribes in the southeast would even trade their goods with other tribes and got inspiration from them to create new designs. Nonetheless, most designs seemed to always include a zigzag four-step pattern. That probably had to do with the fact that, for some tribes, four was a sacred number and symbolized completeness. Furthermore, many tribes have evolved in their craft since the European settlers arrived in America. They now use new materials to continue their craft as well as adapt to civilizations wants and needs. Others like the Navajos adapt to new times, but never forget their heritage and find ways to preserve it in their style of designs. Hence, mathematics is not just numbers, formulas, and equations. It can be a beautiful piece of artwork with elaborate designs that follow simple patterns with the use of simple symmetrical

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