Mathematics in Art

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This course deals with the period beginning with Pythagoras in ancient Greece and goes up to the present day. Topics include: Goedel's incompleteness theorem. Euclidean and non-Euclideangeometries, infinity, paradoxes, soap film experiments. Also discussed are black holes, the Big-Bang theory, relativity and quantum theory. The course is open to all Cooper Union students but is primarily oriented toward making the above-mentioned concepts comprehensive to those with very little mathematics in their background. Engineering students should see the Mathematics faculty and their adviser(s) for permission to take this course. The relatedness of seemingly distant fields (science, art, mathematics, music) is a central theme of the course.

3 general studies credits. Spring only. Bailyn

Course Code: Ma 151.1

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.