The connection between mathematics and art goes back thousands of years. Mathematics has been used in the design of Gothic cathedrals, Rose windows, oriental rugs, mosaics and tilings. Geometric forms were fundamental to the cubists and many abstract expressionists, and award-winning sculptors have used topology as the basis for their pieces. Dutch artist M.C. Escher represented infinity, Möbius bands, tessellations, deformations, reflections, Platonic solids, spirals, symmetry, and the hyperbolic plane in his works.
Mathematicians and artists continue to create stunning works in all media and to explore the visualization of mathematics--origami, computer-generated landscapes, tesselations, fractals, anamorphic art, and more.
"Equal Areas," by Susan McBurney (Western Springs, IL)
Digital print, 12" x 12", 2010
This artwork was inspired by two pages from Leonardo DaVinci's notebooks. While these magnificent books are legendary for their beauty of illustration and depth of subject matter, his purely geometric diagrams have been dismissed by some as intellectual doodling. Closer inspection reveals that at least some of them highlight the equality of different-shaped areas. "Equal Areas" builds upon that concept to also include relative areas of similar figures. In particular, those areas of a certain color in the border design are equal to the same-colored areas in the central figure. All light yellow areas in the borders add up to the all the yellow areas in the center, etc. Note that in some cases the shapes of the same colors are different, yet they are still equal in area. --- Susan McBurney