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Home > 2014 Mathematical Art Exhibition
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"Three-Fold Development, " by Robert Fathauer (Tessellations, Phoenix, AZ)

13" x 13" x 13", ceramics, 2013
Best textile, sculpture, or other medium
2014 Mathematical Art Exhibition

"I'm endlessly fascinated by certain aspects of our world, including symmetry, chaos, and infinity. Mathematics allows me to explore these topics in distinctive artworks that I feel are an intriguing blend of complexity and beauty. "

This sculpture is based on the first five generations of a fractal curve. The starting point is a circle, and the first iteration produces a three-lobed form. With each iteration, the number of lobes is tripled. The spacing between features is essentially constant throughout a layer, while the three-fold symmetric boundary of the curve becomes increasingly complex. A hexagonal version of this curve is found in Benoit Mandelbrot's book "The Fractal Geometry of Nature". This hyperbolic surface is reminiscent of naturally-occurring corals. It was inspired in part by a 3D-printed model created by Henry Segerman. (For more information on this work see . --- Robert Fathauer (

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American Mathematical Society