Learning and creating designs with African Fractals

Many African designs are based on "fractals" -- patterns that repeat themselves at many scales (also called "scaling patterns"). To learn more you can order the book African Fractals by clicking here


Creating fractals with recursive line replacement

Create your own fractals: nature, science, and African design 


Creating fractals with transformational geometry

One fractal design that is part of African American innovation is the scaling pattern of cornrow hairstyles.

Another scaling design from Africa is this Mangbetu ivory sculpture


Logarithmic scaling in an african windscreen

You can build a paper model to explore scaling patterns in an African windscreen


Numeric recursion

Some examples of recursion in African material culture are numeric. The "marching formation" in the game of Owari offers insight into African concepts of iteration, self-organization, and related phenomena. Click here to experiment with these numeric patterns.

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