Art, Geometry, and Abstract Sculpture

Carlo H. Séquin

private 54402

We explore the connections between art and mathematics: How can mathematical models used in education be made more interesting, relevant, and aesthetically pleasing? What mathematical formulations underlie some abstract geometrical sculptures? How can computers help to design new and interesting abstract sculptures? How can we use art and sculptures and puzzles to get children interested in mathematics? In collaboration with Brent Collins and Steve Reinmuth, large bronze sculptures such as "Pax Mundi" and "Hyperbolic Hexagon II" have been designed, cast, and installed. In a project "The Beauty of Knots" undergraduate students are investigating how simple knots at the head of the ubiquitous knot table can be depicted in the most aesthetically pleasing 3D configuration.

Figure 1
Figure 1: "PAX MUNDI II," bronze sculpture, conceived by Brent Collins, computer-modeled by Carlo H. Séquin, cast, assembled, and finished by Steve Reinmuth.

Figure 2
Figure 2: "HyperbolicHexagon," a collaborative piece between Brent Collins, Carlo H. Séquin, and Steve Reinmuth. Installed in the lobby of the CITRIS building in February 2009.

Figure 3
Figure 3: A rather simple 5-crossing knot turned into a model for a monumental sculpture.

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