Thelen Tree Farm

Celebrating 20 Years - 2001 ~ 2021  

Constructing a Golden Rectangle

The Golden Rectangle is a term used to describe a precise and age old relationship between two measures. This ratio is also known as the Divine Proportion, the Golden Mean, the Golden Section, the Magic Ratio and Phi - it is 1:1.618... It's ancient roots have colored our views of architectural perfection and the aesthetic ideal.

Throughout history Phi has been considered the perfect balance, bringing sense and order to our universe. Phi is found in nautilus shells, flowers, music and art. And Phi is found in architecture. The pyramids of ancient Egypt, the Mayan temples and Athens's Parthenon are all demonstrations of this mathematical interpretation of the perfection of the natural world. Phi appeals to our sense of aesthetic balance and order - it is believed to add harmony and beauty to buildings that base their structure on it's proportions.

Phi remained notable during the Renaissance. Artists and musicians employed this "perfect" ratio to evoke feelings of beauty and harmony. Architects brought a new vision to design, replacing the gothic concept of perfection as heaven or paradise with the philosophy of beauty in nature and man. The celebration of our universe as elegant, perfect and connected continues today.

The following are instructions for constructing the Golden Rectangle.

Step 1   Construct a square.
Step 2   Bisect the square.
Step 3   Draw a line from one end of the bisecting line to one of the opposite corners. Extend the baseline of the square.
Step 4   Using the diagonal line as the radius, drop an arc from the corner of the square down to the baseline.
Step 5   Draw a line from the point of intersection of the arc and the baseline, perpendicular to the baseline. Extend the top edge of the square to meet this line and form a rectangle.
Step 6   This rectangle is referred to as the Golden Rectangle