Planet MarsMars Art Gallery

Martian Mandala

Martian Mandala

Image Title: Martian Mandala
Source: Mars Global Surveyor


The geometric symmetry of mandalas has always appealed to me. So have the tessellations of M. C. Escher. Then there are works like "Smaller and Smaller" by Escher that combine the mathematical precision of tessellation with the circular wholeness of mandalas. Such symmetry is also seen in nature. It is especially evident in the many dune formations seen on Mars.

It was a Mars Global Surveyor image of a rectilinear dune field near the north pole of Mars that was the source of inspiration for "Martian Mandala." The apparent infinite complexity of the image brings to mind something said by Thomas Henry Huxley in 1871:

The investigation of nature is an infinite pasture-ground, where all may graze, and where the more bite, the longer the grass grows..."

Source Image Background

The image that was the inspiration and served as a starting point for the "Martian Mandala" was a Mars Global Surveyor Narrow Angle camera image of a dune field near the martian north pole. This dune field is located at 80° north latitude and 168 west longitude.

Image Processing

This image was created using only Adobe Photoshop.


I have created a low resolution version of "Martian Mandala" for use as a desktop wallpaper. Due to the image complexity, a very high JPEG compression setting was used to minimize the file size. Note that this also holds true for the version that appears at the top of the page. This wallpaper version is made available for your personal use only. It is not to be modified or redistributed in any form by any means. All rights are retained by the artist.

Martian Mandala, 1280 X 1024 Wallpaper Image by Jim Plaxco

2005 Jim Plaxco,