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Special Interest Group on
Mathematics and the Arts

of the Mathematical Association of America



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At the end of the (short) article is a link to the entire lecture at YouTube, and some related links.

  • [DC] "ScienceAlert", out of Australia, posted this article about some 3D fractal constructions. There might not be enough detail to understand the math behind the constructions, but there are some nice photos, and a particularly enjoyable video.  Title & lead-in:  "These 'Fabergé Fractals' will blow your mind: Former laser physicist Tom Beddard has turned his hand to creating incredible pieces of art that celebrate the beauty and intricacy of fractals."
  • [DC] For those of you interested in Math & Dancing, here two online stories about math classes on square dancing. (Basically, every move is a permutation in S8, moving the 8 dancers around, while maintaining inversion symmetry. Many abstract group theory questions can be "seen" in the dance.) The articles are:

  • [DC] The 30 April 2014 Wikimedia "picture of the day" is a high resolution photo of the ceiling of the Sheikh-Lotf-Allah mosque in Isfahan, Iran. This is a beautiful centrally symmetric design that brings to mind some of the Escher "Smaller and Smaller" designs with the vanishing point in the center. If you're interested in Islamic Art, or in Escher style designs, you will enjoy this. The picture is available at several resolutions, up to 2,981 x 1,996 pixels. This photo is posted under the GNU Free Documentation License, hence is available for re-use for most purposes with attribution to the creator. (See the link for details.)

  • Visit the MAA online journal, Convergence to see the article, “Cubes, Conic Sections, and Crockett Johnson,” in which authors Stephanie Cawthorne and Judy Green show how author/illustrator Johnson painted his answer to his own question, “What do the straightedge lines and compass arcs do when two parabolas and a hyperbola double a cube, just stand watching?  Johnson (1906-1975) was author of the popular children's book James and the Purple Crayon. Eighty of his mathematical paintings are displayed digitally at the Smithsonian Institution's Mathematical Paintings of Crockett Johnson.  (See "Links" below.)

  • New "Mathematical Treasures" are posted weekly at MAA Convergence.  Two recent ones that might be of most interest to Arts SIGMAA members:
    • Enjoy the beauty of mathematician, artisan, and painter Piero della Francesca's Works of Archimedes (late 1450s, Italy).

    • Look for hidden symbols and meaning in Dutch engraver Cornelis Cort’s depictions of the muses Arithmetica and Geometria (1565).

  • [DC] "The Crafty Lawyer" is a blog written by a lawyer in Washington, but it's primarily about creating arts and crafts. The Jan. 20th post on the blog is a "guest column" by MAA member Greg Coxson reporting on the Math Art competition at the most recent JMM meeting. It focuses primarily on one of the pieces entered by Margaret Kepner (with pictures), but also gives a general introduction both to this annual event and to the Bridges conference.

[DC] = Darrah Chavey
[N] = From the Newsletter


  • [SG] My first volume of poetry "Ode to Numbers" has just appeared with Antrim House (a small poetry press run by Connecticut's Poet Laureate, Robert Rennie McQuilkin). The poems included in "Ode to Numbers" are all about, or inspired by, mathematics and my life as a mathematician. More details about the book (including Table of Contents, some pre-publication back-cover reviews, and sample poems ) can be found on the book's sites, all of which are accessible from here: http://www.math.uconn.edu/~glaz/Ode_to_Numbers/index.html

  • [N] The draft of Projective Geometry applied to Perspective Art, by Marc Frantz in Indiana, Fumiko Futamura in Texas, and Annalisa Crannell in Pennsylvania, is available at https://www.fandm.edu/annalisa-crannell/course-materials/perspective-math-for-majors.

  • [PR] I am emailing you to bring your attention to Lynn Gamwell’s book, Mathematics and Art, just out from Princeton University Press. The link below will get you to PUP’s page for the book. http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10537.html [...] I have taught courses for non-majors at Reed and Bard Colleges, and I know how useful this book could be to teachers giving such a course tied to the arts – perhaps as a library resource, as a source of material for student essays, or possibly as a basic text (the Janson of the subject).

  • [JBH] Visualizing Mathematics with 3D Printing, by Henry Segerman, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, July 2016. From the author's website: "This is a popular mathematics book, with the twist that most of the figures in the book are photographs of 3D printed models. These models are available for readers to download and 3D print themselves, or order online, or explore virtually on the book's website 3dprintmath.com."

[JBH] = Joshua Brandon Holden
[PR] = Peter Renz
[SG] = Sarah Glaz


MAA Convergence homepage: http://www.maa.org/publications/periodicals/convergence

Journal of Humanistic Mathematics is an open access journal that focuses on all human dimensions of doing, teaching, learning and living mathematics. You can read more about our journal at: http://scholarship.claremont.edu/jhm/about.html

Vismath homepage: http://vismath.tripod.com

The Journal of Mathematics and the Arts (JMA), published by Taylor and Francis. JMA is a peer-reviewed journal focusing on connections between mathematics and the arts. For information see: http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/tmaa20/current

The free electronic full color ISAMA publication Hyperseeing is available at: www.isama.org/hyperseeing

The European Society of the Arts, Mathematics and Architecture (EMSA) Newsletter is available at: http://www.math-art.eu/newsletters.php



A very interesting radio program about M.C. Escher, called The Essence of Escher: http://www.prx.org/pieces/6362-rn-documentary-the-essence-of-escher

Images and descriptions of the mathematical paintings of Crockett Johnson in the Smithsonian collections are now available on-line at the NMAH web site. The web address is: http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/object-groups/mathematical-paintings-of-crockett-johnson

A math and art blog from David Bachman, a math professor at Pitzer College: http://mathartblog.com/

The AMS Math Imagery website:  http://www.ams.org/mathimagery/

IMAGINARY, a platform for open and interactive mathematics

Resources for people teaching courses in Mathematics and Art

Bridges, Mathematical Connections in Art, Music and Science

ISAMA - International Society of the Arts, Mathematics and Architecture

ESMA - European Society for Mathematics and the Arts

Bibliography of connections between mathematics and fabrics by Joseph Malkevitch, York College (CUNY)

Products (Not Endorsed by the MAA or SIGMAA-Arts)

Jameco 8x8x8 LED Cube: The Party Dazzler

3D-printed Klein bottle Bottle Opener

“Math : Rules”, by Istvan, a collection of “strange attractors” represented in their 3-dimensional forms