Robb Design Portfolio: Screen Writer

<< Back to Robb Report, August 2006
  • Shaun Tolson

Renaissance artists made frequent use of the Divine Proportion, a ratio of measurements that equals the infinite number Phi (approximately 1.618). The ratio appears often in nature—in the geometry of seashell spirals and the arrangements of plants’ seed heads, for example. During the Renaissance, its artistic applications ranged from the shape of canvases to the dimensions of figurines. More recently, Phi served as a plot device in the novel and subsequent movie The Da Vinci Code. Now, in designing its Da Vinci Code pen, Italian pen maker Tibaldi (tibaldi.it) has drawn on Phi as well as the film.

The ratio between the size of the pen’s cap and its barrel equals Phi, and the production run comprises 61 18-karat gold fountain pens ($21,000) and 18 18-karat gold roller balls ($25,550), as well as silver fountain and roller ball models ($4,550 and $4,100, respectively). The pen’s barrel features an engraved depiction of Leonardo’s Vitruvian Man and renderings of St. Sulpice Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower—both settings for The Da Vinci Code scenes. The barrel design also displays engravings of various codes and symbols referenced in the novel and the film. It’s not blasphemy; it’s just merchandising.

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