Melancolia I

Melencolia I
Source: Wikimedia Commons

It’s possible to visit a very interesting exhibition in Madrid about Albert Durer’s engravings in the Biblioteca Nacional of Madrid (from the 6 of February to 5 of May):

Poster about the exhibition

I was in the Spanish National Library last March and I had the opportunity to visit it. There are 122 engravings designed by this important German artist and we can admire his great Melancolia I between them. We see a lot of geometrical instruments surrounding the main character of the picture but we must pay attention to the truncated rhombohedron with a faint human skull on it and the 4×4 magic square:

Source: Wikimedia Commons

We can read the number 1514 on the lower row of the square which is the date of the engraving. As you can see, the four numbers of each row, each column and each diagonal sum up to 34. Durer was 43 when he painted this picture and maybe his passion for the Fibonacci sequence (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34,…) was enough to reverse the two figures of the number of his age. So it was a very good opportunity to see this iconic picture in a real exhibition.

LocationBiblioteca Nacional of Madrid (map)

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