Math and art: A perfect culmination

Math and art: A perfect culmination

Geometry has evolved through time and now, can be given the shape of art. Today’s artists use
various shapes, angles, and lines to give shape and definition to their art. This type of art, blended with math, is generally referred to as Op Art or Optical Art. Katy Ann Gilmore, a master’s graduate in fine arts created an optical art in the Snell Engineering Centre on Northeastern University’s Boston campus. It looks like a winding, hypnotising set of staircase and the mural is called, “Tethered in Space”.


These murals often make people get transported into a portal. Gilmore says that these murals
require a lot of calculations and math while execution. She had done her bachelor’s in math and
admits that the mural at Northeastern required a lot more calculations than average. She says, “I
actually have a bachelor’s in math. That seemed like the practical thing at the time, I’m grateful now
that I get to do what I love while still thinking about the math concepts I enjoy.”


Before the mural goes up on the wall, her sketches usually look like blueprints. Gilmore draws her
inspiration from architecture and believes that it is a culmination of math and art, the two things
that she likes. The mural in Northeastern was painted in a storage space and she took the dimension
of the space into consideration before starting the paintwork. She often uses a laser projector to
mark out certain foundation points of her painting.


However, she does not require all her lines to be straight for she thinks, “I’ll measure one line and
then not measure the next three, I want the lines to be straight, but not too straight. I don’t want
people to look at this and think that a computer did it.” According to Gilmore, all these imperfections are what make the mural pop out. She makes sure that those glitches are there for she wants people to believe it was done by an individual who makes mistakes.


Subarna Basu

Subarna Basu
Subarna Basu

A final year English Honors student, waiting for Godot.

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