The Morgan Lehman Gallery is currently holding it’s second Twenty by Sixteen Biennial. Each of the 38 artists displays two works of art, each 20 inches tall and 16 inches wide. The mathematical rules of the allowed proportions of the art work intrigued me. With these limitations the style and subject matter of each participant becomes even more important.
These two canvases by Eric Doeringer reference the work of Mel Bochner and are a direct answer to the parameters of the exhibit.
Wendy Small’s two photograms titled “Remedy” feature botanical patterns that have been replicated four times to create both horizontal and vertical lines of reflective symmetry.
The creation of plaid patterns involves all sorts of geometric possibilities. Carly Glovinski uses pen and ink to develop intricate woven plaid patterns. The seven horizontal strips are all of the same coloration and pattern with a reflective line of symmetry. The vertical strips are more complex. The two outer strips are the same stripes of colors but reversed in order. The next two strips are the same and they both possess reflective symmetry. the center strip is a type all it’s own but it also has a vertical line of symmetry. With all of these separate configurations Glovinski was able to create a 20’X 16″ panel of plaid with a both horizontal and vertical lines of reflective symmetry.
This Biennial has an underlying mathematical theme, through the prescribed size of the art work. Some the artists used these proportions to create work that included geometric and symmetrical exploration.
“The listening dimension” , Olafur Eliasson’s current solo exhibition at the Tanya Bonakdar gallery, features a series of new interactive installations. The aesthetic qualities of each work changes as the viewer moves within the space.
The main room of the gallery features large mirrored walls. From a distance there appears to be a series of metal rings suspended, but as you get closer the rings are actually semi-circles attached to the mirrored wall. The physicality of the partial circles are made whole through the illusion of reflection.
On the second floor of the gallery there are some light installations from Eliasson’s “Space resonates regardless of our presence” series, featuring concentric circles of light and shadow the sources of which reveal them self as you walk next to the instrumentation installed in the gallery.
The work in this show is about how perception changes with location. Though using basic geometric forms, circles, the optical manipulations are more significant.
The Haber Space at Central Booking Gallery on the Lower East Side is currently presenting “Natura Mathematica”, curated by Maddy Rosenberg. This exhibition features the work of 24 artists and addresses the connection between the aesthetics of Mathematics and forms and patterns found in nature.
Erik and Martin Demaine’s folded paper sculpture titled “Phylotakis 959” explores the Fibonacci double spirals found in sunflowers.
Amber Heaton’s installation “Breakdown” also utilizes the Fibonacci Sequence. The number of strings in each vertical column increases from the outer edge on each on the perpendicular walls. Starting on each side with one thread, then one thread again, then 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, then 55 near the corner. This work offers the viewer a very direct visual representation of the beauty of this growth sequence that is found in many natural phenomena.
Eva Mantell “microcosm” series presents 3-D geometric line drawings using straws. This example features a series of acute triangles of various sizes radiating out from the center of the form.
“Natura Mathematica” displays a differs collection of work offering a broad exploration of the connections of Mathematical sequences series and formulae and the natural word.
The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) in Salem, Massachusetts is currently featuring an exhibition titled “Lunar Attraction” at their Art & Nature center. This show includes a diverse selection of art that relates to the Moon, in both the scientific realm, as well as the mythological.
One of the scientific themes explored is the moons connection to the earth’s tide. Adrien Segal’s “Tidal Datum” from 2007 utilizes the numerical data from a tidal chart that maps the tidal patterns of the ocean in the San Francisco Bay. The undulating steel curves dip down the furthest and rise up the highest during new and full moons when there is the strongest gravitational pull. In this work the artist has directly transposed mathematical information into a aesthetic expression of a natural phenomena.