Wednesday, June 13, 2012

State of the Art

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:48 PM

The new June/July issue of the AMS Notices
on a recent Paris exhibit of art and mathematics—

Mathématiques, un dépaysement soudain
Exhibit at the Fondation Cartier, Paris
October 21, 2011–March 18, 2012

                                            … maybe walking
into the room was supposed to evoke the kind of
dépaysement  for which the exhibition is named
(the word dépaysement  refers to the sometimes
disturbing feeling one gets when stepping outside
of one’s usual reference points). I was with
my six-year-old daughter, who quickly gravitated
toward the colorful magnetic tiles on the wall that
visitors could try to fit together. She spent a good
half hour there, eventually joining forces with a
couple of young university students. I would come
and check on her every once in a while and heard
some interesting discussions about whether or not
it was worth looking for patterns to help guide the
placing of the tiles. The fifteen-year age difference
didn’t seem to bother anyone.
     The tiles display was one of the two installations
here that offered the visitor a genuine chance to
engage in mathematical activity, to think about
pattern and structure while satisfying an aesthetic
urge to make things fit and grow….

Nathalie Sinclair

The Notices  included no pictures with this review.
A search to find out what sort of tiles were meant
led, quite indirectly, to the following—

IMAGE- French weblog post on Truchet tiles dated May 1st, 2011

The search indicated it is unlikely that these Truchet  tiles
were the ones on exhibit.

Nevertheless, the date  of the above French weblog post,
1 May 2011, is not without interest in the context of 
today's previous post. (That post was written well before
I had seen the new AMS Notices  issue online.)

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