Saturday, July 21, 2007

Turku's Fibonacci Smokestack

From my student, Dalia Krieger, here's a picture of a smokestack in Turku, Finland, that displays, in neon, the first 10 Fibonacci numbers. Why is it there? I have no idea. But why should Finland have all the fun? Let's put the Thue-Morse sequence on some smokestacks.


Unknown said...

My girlfriend is from the Turku region and she had some further information about the subject.

The smokestack is an artwork called Fibonacci Sequence 1-55 by an Italian artist called Mario Merz. Built in 1994.

The smokestack belongs to a local energy company and the artwork itself belongs to Wäinö Aaltonen Museum of Art. The English pages of WAM do not have much details about the work. Here's a summary of the Finnish blurb:

"The mathematical definition of beauty". A short history of the Fibonacci sequence. "Part of an environmental art project". Similar works by Merz are also in Guggenheim (New York, 1990), Centre Pompidou (Paris 1981) and Ludwig Museum (Cologne, 1986). The one in Turku is the biggest, though.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Thanks, Ars, for the information -- although I have to admit being a bit disappointed. I would have preferred it if the Fibonacci tower were just the spontaneous brainchild of mathematics-loving city fathers...