A Closer Look At Pat­terns - What Do They Re­veal?

Distinguished Magazine - - CONTENTS - SAN­CHITA CHOWDHURY

While some of the shapes could be ge­o­met­ri­cal pat­terns and oth­ers more likely to be the ones in­spired by the Na­ture; repli­cat­ing shapes of the leaves, flow­ers, droplets of wa­ter, ice crys­tals, waves on the sea and so on.

Leena scooped a hand­ful of white rice pow­der, and then deftly po­si­tioned her thumb over the curve of her in­dex fin­ger to al­low the pow­der es­cape in a smooth con­sis­tent flow through the thin gap of the fin­gers. Soon an in­tri­cate pat­tern ap­peared of the floor with thin white lines criss­cross­ing each other, just out­side the thresh­old of the door­way to her apart­ment - it is an early morn­ing rit­ual that Leena never for­gets!

The prac­tice of mak­ing in­tri­cate and elab­o­rate col­or­ful mo­tifs in front of the main door way or court­yard with col­ored pow­ders, or even plain white rice flour is an age-old prac­tice in In­dia, es­pe­cially in the South­ern states. Their col­or­ful ren­der­ings are quite al­lur­ing, and if you spot one such mo­tif of rich col­ors any­time, take a pa­tient and deeper look – you will find unique shapes emerg­ing from the ensemble of pat­terns. While some of the shapes could be ge­o­met­ri­cal pat­terns and oth­ers can be more likely the ones in­spired by the Na­ture; repli­cat­ing shapes of the leaves, flow­ers, droplets of wa­ter, ice crys­tals, waves on the sea and so on.

ARE YOU WON­DER­ING IN WHAT OTHER WAYS MOTHER NA­TURE CAN IN­SPIRE US?

Then, think of a col­or­ful rug on a dull-look­ing wall of your house, or a rug spread over your old fur­ni­ture or the car­pet that cov­ers the floor of your din­ing area! The mo­tifs on them are def­i­nite at­ten­tion-grab­bers! Their pat­terns not only trans­form your liv­ing space, they usher in pos­i­tive vibes and subtly touch your finer senses. Rugs with an­i­mal mo­tifs, flo­ral de­signs, re­li­gious themes, tribal or his­tor­i­cal nar­ra­tives in an­tique de­signs, placed amidst mod­ern fur­ni­ture may ren­der the beauty of the place time­less. Dec­o­ra­tive rugs of­ten de­pict sym­bol­ism in na­ture – sub­sti­tut­ing plants, an­i­mals or land­forms and other parts of Na­ture with geo­met­ric, sim­ple mo­tifs.

What makes the mo­tifs on rugs and car­pets re­mark­able is the artis­tic han­dling of art forms. It can be an ar­range­ment of par­al­lel rows, a con­cen­tric man­dala, a block pat­tern or even a free form; and a deeper anal­y­sis of the style of each mo­tif would re­veal cer­tain unique­ness of a cul­ture where it is cre­ated. It can be even ex­pres­sion of a higher and cre­ative realm. Con­tem­po­rary art forms, of course, en­joy the free­dom in­cor­po­rat­ing more real-life el­e­ments and stray­ing be­yond the stereo­type ways.

Louise Broad­hurst of Christie’s Ori­en­tal Rugs and Car­pets re­veals her ob­ser­va­tion of the dif­fer­ent tra­di­tional de­signs: “the herati pat­tern bears flo­ral mo­tifs at the cor­ners, sur­rounded by lancet-shaped leaves or fish from weavers of Per­sia, and the no­madic tribes such as the Qashqai in South East Per­sia; the har­shang or ‘crab’ pat­tern orig­i­nated in the Kho­rasan dis­trict in Per­sia; but the north-west Per­sian kelleh pat­tern de­pict the crabs with open claws. The an­cient boteh mo­tif is ‘pais­ley’ or ‘pear’ shaped, widely used in Per­sia and In­dia. The cen­tral medal­lion pat­tern that cre­ates a sym­met­ri­cal de­sign that orig­i­nated from ear­lier 15th cen­tury Per­sian manuscript cov­ers, be­gan to be used in car­pet de­signs in the 16th cen­tury. In the 18th and 19th cen­turies, the weavers also chose sub­jects taken from clas­si­cal prose and po­etry.”

CAN PAT­TERNS ALSO RE­VEAL SE­CRETS ABOUT YOUR LIFE­STYLE?

Ever won­dered what kind of splen­did imag­i­na­tions could have brought about con­struc­tion of the New Acropo­lis Mu­seum, the Ale­sia Mu­seum, Petronas tow­ers or the Burj Khal­ifa? Again, a pa­tient look at their ar­chi­tec­tural styles will re­veal the an­swer – the pat­terns! Those that in­voke grandeur, mag­nif­i­cence and won­der. Next time when you step out of your house, ob­serve the ar­chi­tec­tural style of build­ings in your neigh­bour­hood. Ar­chi­tec­tural pat­terns re­veal so­cial and eco­nomic con­di­tions of peo­ple – how a neigh­bor­hood of multi-sto­ried apart­ments dif­fers from the one with in­de­pen­dent, uniquely built ar­chi­tec­tural houses; or a lo­cal­ity crowded with plain and or­di­nary build­ings cater­ing to ba­sic needs of liv­ing varies from those with baroque, plush style cater­ing to the rich, eclec­tic tastes of those who can af­ford them. The pat­terns di­vulge aes­thetic sense, eco­nomic con­di­tion, cul­tural make-up of the mind of peo­ple liv­ing therein!

Sci­en­tific study con­firms that our brains have the ca­pac­ity to ab­sorb a large amount of in­for­ma­tion; how­ever, the process is faster and smoother when in­for­ma­tion is de­liv­ered in an or­ga­nized way. That’s the rea­son why our brains ab­hor chaos and are at peace with or­ga­nized set­tings. So, when a given space is built into a spe­cific pat­tern, dis­cern the so­lu­tion it pro­vides to a unique de­mand or a ne­ces­sity of the peo­ple in a so­ci­ety. These pat­terns cre­ate con­nec­tions be­tween the peo­ple and how they in­ter­act with their en­vi­ron­ment. It’s no more a won­der than how ar­chae­ol­o­gists speak vol­umes about the cul­ture of a place after they dis­cover and ex­ca­vate re­mains of old build­ings!

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