Isomorphology shapes


When I was at school my art projects always seemed to involve human anatomy, plant anatomy and forms in the landscape. As an artist, I have become increasingly interested in observing the morphology of animal, vegetable and mineral species. Gradually, I have built up a practice based upon observational drawing and collaboration, working with scientists and mathematicians at the Natural History Museum, Kew Gardens and University College London.

Because my interest spans zoological, mineralogical and botanical collections I spend a lot of time drawing specimens and observing form – which has led to an awareness of the resemblances between species of separate kingdoms. As I worked, I became aware that there was no specific documentation of cross-kingdom resemblances between the animal, the vegetable and the mineral. With further thought, I have realized that behind these resemblances are various forms and symmetries. These form the basis of ‘Isomorphology’ – a new term which I have coined. It is derived from ‘Isomorphism’; a mathematical and biological concept.

Etymology, from Greek:
Isos | ‘Same/Equal’
Morphe | ‘Form’
Logos | ‘Study’

In this introduction, I will sketch a ‘bauplan’ for each form and an example of one animal, mineral and vegetable species, which share the same form. There are many more examples that can be drawn for each form and these will be explored in greater detail in further work.