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MAT 136 Mathematics and Visual Arts (3 credits)

This course will explore connections between mathematics and the arts. Mathematics - itself an aesthetic endeavor - has made fundamental contributions to art history and continues to be a source of inspiration to many contemporary artists. We will begin with the study of mathematical perspective, and of optical devices, such as the camera obscura, which assisted artists and illustrators in depicting the world around them. At the beginning of the twentieth century, artists turned to non-Euclidean geometries and higher dimensional spaces for inspiration and to break free from the constraints of linear perspective. We will take some time to understand these geometries as well. The remaining topics will be chosen according to the interests and talents of the students in the course. Possibilities include fractals, math and music, math and architecture, and advanced perspective topics.

Course fulfills the GEP and GER Mathematics Requirement.