Image with Commentary

January 2015

Symmetry and asymmetry are important concepts in an aesthetic vocabulary of the human form. Symmetry is linked to beauty and asymmetry to ugliness. The mirrored symmetry of the human body divides it along a saggital plane into nearly equivalent right and left sides.

Ink blots also have mirrored symmetry and were used by the Swiss psychologist, Hermann Rorschach (1884-1922), in the Rorschach test for personality characteristics. He experimented with both asymmetric and symmetric images before opting for the primacy of symmetry.

In contrast to the anatomic symmetry of the external human form, the inner body is a maze of asymmetries. Surgeons spend years learning to navigate through this world of asymmetry. The image shows a surgical scene recast in symmetry like a many colored ink blot reflected across a center fold of paper.(2014)

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