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.
A Lorenz attractor comes from a system of three differential equations created to model convection in the atmosphere, and frequently used to show the sensitivity of a chaotic system to initial conditions. For another chaotic system, invite your kids to help design the pancakes. To see about making your own fractal pancakes, as well as other topics I find interesting as a math teacher, check out my blog. --- Nathan Shields (www.10minutemath.com)