The Golden RatioThere are a variety of perspectives from which to view the Golden Ratio $\varphi$ (Greek letter "phi"). In the context of dynamic proportions, $\varphi$ corresponds to the Golden Rectangle constructed as follows :
- Construct a simple square.
- Draw a line from the midpoint of one side of the square to an opposite corner.
- Use that line as the radius to draw an arc that defines the height of the rectangle.
- Complete the golden rectangle.
Many people have claimed that the Golden Ratio figures in the designs of a number of ancient architectural works such as the Great Pyramid in Egypt and the Parthenon in Greece, and in the works of Leonardo da Vinci .
Such claims have generally been met with criticisms regarding their scientific rigour . In any event, that the Golden Ratio or other dynamic proportions have a special status with regard to pictorial decomposition is an idea which many artists have at least been exposed to, whether or not they (consciously or otherwise) incorporate it into their own artwork. Two alleged examples of artists who utilized dyamic proportions are American painters George Bellows (1882 - 1925) and Maxfield Parrish (1870 - 1966).