Waclaw
Sierpinski
(1882  1969 )
World War I
totally disrupted the mathematical communities of eastern Europe.
Rather than try to rebuild comprehensive university programs in
several areas of research, Sierpinski, Kuratowski, Banach and others
decided to work together in the emerging field of abstract
spaces. They soon became known as the "Polish School."
Their first international recognition came from publishing a new
journal, Fundamenta Mathematicae (1920), devoted to set theory
and related topics, and not to their work in topology. Indeed,
the publication of Banach's dissertation in 1922 has been called the
birth of functional analysis.
Still, an
interest in abstract spaces flourished. As early as 1915,
Sierpinski described a "gasket" or a "triangle" with repeated and
proportionally reduced areas. Today these shapes are widely known
as "fractals." Sierpinski's triangles would later emerge to be
among the most recognizable shapes or patterns in all computer
graphics.
As Botticelli
gave birth to Venus by using foam of the sea, the recursive
power of the computer would lift Sierpinski's triangles to a heightened
level of prominence.

