The influence of perception on the distribution of multiple symmetries in nature and art
Number of pages
SourceSymmetry, 3, 1, (2011), pp. 54-71
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ DCC CO
SubjectAction, intention, and motor control; DI-BCB_DCC_Theme 2: Perception, Action and Control
Much is already known about single mirror symmetry, but multiple mirror symmetry is still understood poorly. In particular, perceptually, multiple symmetry does not seem to behave as suggested by the number of symmetry axes alone. Here, theoretical ideas on single symmetry perception and their extensions to multiple symmetry are discussed alongside empirical findings on multiple symmetry perception. The evidence suggests that, apart from the number of axes, also their relative orientation is perceptually relevant. This, in turn, suggests that perception is responsible for the preponderance of 3-fold and 5-fold symmetries in flowers as well as for their absence in decorative art.
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