Finding Patterns Everywhere
These items from the Objects of Wonder exhibit are either spiral shaped or contain a spiral. What can we learn from recognizing this pattern?
Recognizing patterns is part of the scientific process: by detecting regularity in a complex and seemingly chaotic universe, we can begin to understand the underlying processes that shape our world. All these spirals share the same mesmerizing curves, but formed in different ways.
Scroll down to view the objects in this collection.
Stone Adze, "Puna"
Culture: Polynesian, probably Maori
Place and Date: New Zealand, pre-18th century
Description: The New Zealand Maori used a variety of spirals, known as koru, in their art and material culture. The motif, seen here on a woodworking tool called an adze, may derive from the silver fern’s young shoots.
Catalog Number: E178579 (view complete catalog record)