MathArt in Lucca

I have been lucky enough to be able to travel this Spring. And I have found some Modern Math/Art in Italy. 
The Pallazzo Delle Esposizioni Piazza San Martino in Lucca is currently presenting a group show titled “LABIRINTO”, a reference to the ancient stone carving on the Cathedral. The artist Teo Pirisi known as “Moneyless” is exhibiting work from he is blackboard series.

Each of these three works are acrylic on chalk boards. They are created by shifting and copying a circle across the surface. They all feature both horizontal and vertical lines of reflective symmetry.

Lucca is filled with amazing art from numerous centuries, but it was fun to find an exhibition of contemporary art with Mathematical connections.

Susan Happersett

Geco at the Guggenheim (final episode)

This this third installment on the Gego exhibition at the Guggenheim. Near the end of her long career, Gego created a series of paper weavings based on grids and geometric forms.

“Tejedura 91/30”  uses a horizontal/vertical grid formation of squares and rectangles. This piece features order-2 rotational symmetry.

“Tejedura 89/23” incorporates an angled component to the grid structure allowing the artist to create squares in a diamond position. 

This retrospective of Gego’s long and diverse exploration into both geometry and the concept of infinity will be on display at the Guggenheim in NYC through the Summer of 2023

Susan Happersett

Gego at the Guggenheim (more)

As I mention in a previous post I am totally enamored with the Gego show at the Guggenheim. So here are a few more wonderful examples of her work. The museum devoted an entire section of the exhibition to Gego’s use of parallel lines. I particularly liked the black sculptures on display. 

This aluminum sculpture from 1957 is titled “12 Concentric Circles”. It uses a series of curved lines create a 3D drawing. Both the sculptural form and its shadows create an interesting play of positive and negative space.

“Sphere” from 1959 is made from brass and steel. For this sculpture, the artist used straight parallel lines, but the overall shape is curved. I particularly like the juxtaposition of the straight and the curve. Again the shadows are so important and give a sense of more than 3 dimensions.

“Gegotoi” (1959) is an iron sculpture of all straight lines. To me this really feels like an open triangular book with parallel lines of texts.

Again if you are in NYC head to the Guggenheim! I still have more art from this show I want to talk about so…. Look for my next post soon.

Susan Happersett


I am so happy to introduce my new collaboration, FlutterFly!

I worked with Esther K. Smith to create this limited edition series of Artist’s Books. The surface patterns are my algorithmically generated Trapezoidal Lace drawings that Esther overlapped and printed using Risograph processes at SVA. The structure for these pieces is one of my new inventions: I am working on developing non-Euclidean paper sculptural forms that can be build from a set of identical geometric paper shapes attached in a helix formation and then either bent or folded. These shapes are inspired by hyperbolic geometry.

The FlutterFly books are built using 3 very special rectangles. The proportions of the rectangle are such that when you fold along both diagonals equilateral triangles are formed. I used the Pythagorean formula to do my calculations!
If you would like to own a FlutterFly they are published by the EK Smith Museum and are available on Etsy for $33 plus shipping in the Purgatory Pie Press store. If you add the code 001Fibonacci in the instruction section you will also receive a free gift! 

I hope you like this new book. Let me know what you think.

Susan Happersett

Gego: Measuring Infinity at the Guggenheim, NYC

The Guggenheim Museum in New York is currently presenting the work of Gego in a retrospective titled “Measuring Infinity“. *Spoiler alert* I have been a huge fan of Gego’s work for awhile now, and I knew that her art would look amazing in the white helix that is the Guggenheim.

As you start to walk up the ramp there is a small alcove gallery. In this space, the curators have installed a selection of what Gego referred to as “reticulareas”, sculptures from the 1960’s to the 80’s. Their construction is based on squares and triangles. The whole environment was so breathtaking I literally  forgot to breath and started getting dizzy. Here are a few of my favorite pieces in the room.

A series of bronzes from 1977
“Columna”, 1972
Close up of “Columna”
“Retinulaveo Cuandrada”
Close up of “Retinulaveo Cuandrada”

What makes Gego’s work so irresistible to me is the fact that besides being very beautiful it also expresses Mathematics in two different ways. The work is all built using basic geometric principles. But the complexity of the patterns and the repetition lead the viewer to think about the infinity.

This exhibition is huge. I can not possibly write about it in one post. I have already seen the show twice and I plan to go back again. I will write more soon. In the mean time I encourage any one who can get to NYC this Spring or Summer to see this exhibition.

Susan Happersett