Water Dragons: An Exploration of Fractal Watershed Forms

This exhibition was presented at the MAC Center for the Art, 158 Main Street, Newport, VT, from Oct 8 - Nov 28, 2021

This exhibit explored the interpretive relationship between watershed patterns and the imagination, and reflects on the complex evolutionary interaction between water and the landscape.

A key aspect of watershed patterns are the meandering pathways of streams and rivers that arise from asymmetrical erosion of banks at turning points in the flow. This positive feedback renders straight streams nonlinearly unstable, and causes meanders to continually evolve and oscillate over the long term like slithering serpents.

Another important aspect of watershed patterns are the fractal structures of many watersheds, that is, the fern-like self-similarity of watershed flow patterns on different scales, whereby the overall pattern seen on the large scale is also seen on the small scale. This aspect also arises from a positive feedback effect involving erosion - a larger flow erodes more, attracting additional flows to feed into it over time, leading to a coalescence of flows via a fractal branching structure.

These two aspects of watershed structure combine to immensely increase the length of shoreline per unit of water surface area, providing crucial habitat to myriad species.

Additionally, the eroding effects of water create myriad objects of great beauty - some of which are displayed in this exhibit - and ultimately help provide the soils upon which plant growth depends.

The extraordinarily high heat capacity of water - the largest of all ordinary substances - also plays a crucial role in the climate - and water’s electronic polarity enables it to facilitate the chemical reactions essential to life.

Finally, water’s unusual property of expanding upon freezing enables freshwater fish and other species to exist in northern climates, and helps break down bedrock into soil (as well as bursting frozen pipes!).

And so it is that water - that seemingly innocuous and ordinary fluid - not only provides the essential substance that makes cellular life on earth possible in the first place, but also dramatically shapes all aspects of the environments through which it courses, while providing beauty and inspiration to those lucky enough to experience those environments.

Indeed, water is life!

 

This water dragon (above) is named Pyron. For more info about Pyron, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Tryon. For more info about Tryon, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Nobulon. For more info about Nobulon, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Homunculon. For more info about Homunculon, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Crocon. For more info about Crocon, or how to purchase, click here

These water dragons (above) are named Siron and Centron. For more info about them, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Hydron. For more info about Hydron, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Pion. For more info about Pion, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Zebulon. For more info about Zebulon, or how to purchase, click here

This water dragon (above) is named Spartacon. For more info about Spartacon, or how to purchase, click here

The dragons with the synthesizers I played at the Exhibit Opening.

These are all water shaped objects I found on the shore of Lake Memphremagog during walks with my wife.

Sinusoidal shaped stand, like the meanders of a river...

One of several water shrines in the exhibit.

Dragons meeting in space, exchanging energy. To see in more detail, or purchase, click here.

Variations on Water Dragon I ("Pyron" the Fire Dragon). To see in more detail, or purchase, click here.

One of my "Sonic Art" pieces. This one was generated from a spectrogram of an improvisation I performed on a vintage Minimoog Synthesizer. For a detailed explanation or to purchase, click here.

One of the Celtic patterns over a water shrine. 

Another of the Celtic Patterns. To see up close or purchase these see the "Abstract Pieces" listing by clicking here.

Pyramids and Prisms! To see up close or purchase these see the "Abstract Pieces" listing by clicking here.

 One of the "Sacred Shields."

A collection of eight colorful images. See Abstract Pieces.

Two images derived, respectively, from a photo of a sunset, and a photo of the Sun. See Abstract Pieces.

Some large prints (16x20) of "Cartesia," "Chroma Novae #2," and "Genesis" (an evocation of the formation of a solar system). See Abstract Pieces.

Some large prints (16x20) of "Choma Novae #1," "Mandala #1," and "Ellipses #1." See Abstract Pieces.

Some large prints (16x20) of "Ellipsis #2," and "Fireflies." See Abstract Pieces.

The synths, my iMAC, and the Gallery East Wall.

A self-portrait.

Another Celtic Pattern and a Sacred Shield. See Abstract Pieces.

"Datura" (a Jimson weed flower I encountered on a hike) and "Electrifica #1," of a power line system encountered in Stowe, VT. See Photo Mods.

"Mothra #1," a repitiva of a photo of moth. Click here for a close up.

"Buffalo Spirit." Click here.

"Spirit of Hydrogen." Note the little crown: Hydrogen is the King of the Elements! Click here.

Some of my "Humanoid" series pieces, in front of the metal frame that inspired them, along with some digital "bits and bytes" for refreshment!

Slice of pi anyone?

Humanoid #5, one of the best of this series I think!

The humanoid frame from the back.

 

Another in the "Electrifica" series. Click here.

 

A foreboding looking humanoid figure I call "Cryalon," as in "cryogenic" and "cry alone"....

A triptic of distorted humanoid figures, over a very color humanoid figure.

"Fire Spirit"! Click here.

Some mounted prints (print panels) of some of the mandalas and vortices. To see more closely and/or purchase, click here.

Mandala #1 as a mounted print.

Chroma Vortex #1 as a mounted print.

Some additional mothra prints and another (dragon's eye!) mandala.

The quick pickup sales rack...