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Mathematics and the Visual ArtsPowerPoint Presentation

Mathematics and the Visual Arts

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Mathematics and the Visual Arts Math 102 Spring 2003 Professor Mark Schlatter La Parade (Seurat) Stairway to Heaven (Ken Keller) A symmetry print from Escher The Flagellation of Christ (Piero della Francesca) Innerspace (Arthur Silverman)

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Goals of this class

Using mathematical principles (with an emphasis on geometry),

- analyze artwork
- create artwork

Themes of this class

- dimension - how can artwork be described in terms of its dimensionality?
- validity - when does mathematical analysis have a valid claim in interpreting art? when is it misused?

Logistics

- Syllabus
- Web site

Proportion in portraiture

- The length of a man's outspread arms is equal to his height.
- …. from the bottom of the chin to the top of the head is one eighth of his height; ….The greatest width of the shoulders contains in itself the fourth part of man. ... The whole hand will be the tenth part of the man.
- Source: The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci, Vol. 1 (of a 2 vol. set in paperback) pp. 182-3, Dover, ISBN 0-486-22572-0.

Proportion in portraiture

Other sites:

- The figure-drawing lab
- Marc Frantz’s material on perspective and proportion

Practice

- Use this work (Self-Portrait, Between the Clock and the Bed) by Edvard Munch to test some of the proportion rules.

Questions

- What concerns would drive an artist to use these proportions?
- What concerns would drive an artist to break these proportions?
- Consider Edvard Munch’s The Scream

For next class….

- Bring a ruler and graph paper.
- Start the homework (due next Monday) on the web site.

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