The technique of hatching, using many thin, parallel lines to describe form, texture and shadow has been in use since at least the middle ages. It lends itself well to etching, engraving and drawing, and was a favourite technique of Albrecht Dürer.

Mathematics-inspired artist Hamid Naderi Yeganeh uses formulas to push crosshatching into stunning and complex forms. 

7000 circles create an organic form with depth.
7,000 Circles © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh
A close up of one corner of the organic form, showing the tiny circles that make it up.
Detail from 7,000 Circles © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh. Here the tiny circles are visible in chains along the bottom left. 

Formula used to create the image

It can be difficult for a modern audience to appreciate all of the coded symbols in a work by Renaissance artist Dürer - and I do not mind admitting that I cannot follow the mathematical formulas that Yeganeh uses to launch his iterative artwork. The formulas are shared below each piece for those who can explore and appreciate them. 

8,000 circle form
8,000 Line Segments © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh


Form created from 9000 circles
9,000 Circles © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh

Formula for 9000 circles


15000 line segments forming a beautiful pattern of intricate squares
15,000 Line Segments © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh

Formula for 15000 line segments

I love the tiny circles in particular - it's a way of creating the forms that in one way evokes cells and also demonstrates the power of computer modelling under the hand of an artist. Crosshatching can be difficult to create in a way that appears uniform, and indeed imperfection is typically part of the technique's charm. Yeganeh's work feels both artistically familiar and machine-polished. There's craftsmanship hidden in these folds and contours. 

When Yeganeh turns to representational art, the intense crosshatching takes on a playful air.

The lines form a flying bird
A Bird in Flight © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh


The lines form a boat
Boat © Hamid Naderi Yeganeh

formula for the boat

Yeganeh has had work featured in The Guardian and The New York Times. Visit Hamid Naderi Yeganeh's website to explore more exquisite, mathematically inspired forms.