Seeing Symmetry and the Beauty of Math – O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library hosts exhibit beginning March 18 – St. Thomas Libraries Blog
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Seeing Symmetry and the Beauty of Math – O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library hosts exhibit beginning March 18


 Math has never been so beautiful

Please join the Department of Mathematics and the O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library at the University of St. Thomas for a special mathematical art exhibit.

“Seeing Symmetry”  (Exhibit Dates: March 18 through mid-April, 2013)

Exhibit Opening and Public Lecture, Monday, March 18, 2013 –

4:00 p.m.—Exhibit Opening and Reception – free and open to all

     O’Shaughnessy Frey Library, Room 108 (the O’Shaughnessy Room)

7:00 p.m.—Lecture by the Artist – free and open to all

     3M Auditorium, OWS 150

     Light refreshments will be served after the lecture.

About the exhibit:

The word symmetry may evoke bilateral symmetry, as in an idealized human face or the two wings of a butterfly.

For mathematicians, the concept is richer, ranging from the patterns of wallpaper to the symmetries of a molecule or crystal.

Indeed, the concept of symmetry is central to students’ first experiences in the field of abstract algebra, where symmetry is used to illustrate the idea of a group. For mathematicians, group is a technical notion that may be best approached through examples, like the ones offered here.

The images in this exhibition offer a way to learn more about symmetry and the group concept. Of course, some visitors will prefer simply to look and enjoy a workout of the visual cortex.

About the artists:

Frank A. Farris is a 2012 visiting professor at the University of Minnesota. He is an associate professor in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Santa Clara University. He edited Mathematics Magazine from 2001 through 2005, and again in 2009. He remains active in the Mathematical Association of America and is currently chair of the organization’s Council on Publications and Communications. In 2011, Farris was a visiting professor at Carleton College where this exhibit originated.

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