The humble square; some interesting facts. Squares (and rectangles) are probably the most common geometric shapes we see making them familiar, safe, comfortable, and trusted. They play an important role in both mathematics and design.
Mathematicians, around 4,000 years ago, created a number game using the square; we call it magicsquare. The square is comprised of a grid of numbers for which every line, column, and diagonal adds up to the same number.
The magic square shows up in art as far back as 1514 when Albrecht Durer included a 4×4 magic square in Melencolia I, his most famous painting. In the 20th century, Josep Subirachs, incorporated a magic square on the Passion Façade of Antoni Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia; the numbers total 33, the age of Christ at his death.
In 1915, Russian painter, Kazimir Malevich painted a black square on a white square canvas aptly named The Black Square. This simple piece was a turning point in art history and is referred to as the “zero point in painting.” It marked the move from old art to new art (abstract).
In 1950, Josef Albers began a series, Homage to the Square, that he worked on for 26 years. These interesting paintings contain 3 or 4 squares inside each other and are designed to show the interaction and influence colors have on each other. Art educators use his series today to teach color theory.