MathStudio is an ongoing creative studio space focusing on process and dialog about art and mathematics.


Inaugural Event


“X = ”
an art + math participation

October 16—19, 2008

A site-specific participation and installation involving 16 artists and mathematicians working in 4 designed studio spaces to explore the creative process and dynamic communication between art and math, including image/blackboard projections and live stream video and television at APE space, 126 Main Street, in downtown Northampton.

  • Participants

  • Pau Atela
  • Suzanne Bocanegra
  • Robert Bosch
  • Satyan Devadoss
  • John Gibson
  • Marthe Keller
  • Clarinda Mac Low
  • Mckendree Key
  • John McCleary
  • Brian O’Connell
  • David Pushkin
  • Aki Sasamoto
  • Joe Smith
  • Gordon Thorne
  • Arturo Vidich
  • B. Wurtz
  • Space + Documentation

  • APE
  • Quang Bao
  • Culture Push
  • Nat Friedman
  • Tristram Metcalfe
  • Arturo Vidich
    • Starting concepts

    • 1. Hidden shapes (square pegs, Borsuk-Ulam phenomena, coincidence theory) & Alternative geometries (classical Euclidean/ nonEuclidean, geometry from combinatorics and number theory)
    • 2. Determinism/Chaos (18th century Laplace’s demon: the universe is completely deterministic. Within this same body of mathematics 20th century’s Chaos Theory emerges) & Shadows (literary, geometric, spatial, the dark side)
    • 3. Folding (origami, flexibility, hinged) & Triangulations (shape morphing, face-recognition, surface geometry)
  • 4. Optimization & Constraints Optimization is the branch of mathematics concerned with optimal performance, finding the best way to complete a well-defined task. It is particularly useful when the task is complex and highly constrained. Artists face constraints all the time, and only some are set by the outside world. Most are self-imposed. T.S. Eliot wrote “When forced to work within a strict framework, the imagination is taxed to its utmost—and will produce its richest ideas.”

 MathStudio Partners

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Schedule for participants; open to the public where noted

Thursday, October 16

11am – x
Open Hours, visit APE space site, determine set up, examine materials

Coffee and fall drinks for 16 participants

Artist talk by Richard Tuttle, introduction by Pau Atela and Frazer Ward
One of the world’s leading contemporary visual artists, Tuttle recently had an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art and a major retrospective spanning his 40-year career at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Weinstein auditorium
Wright Hall at Smith College

6:30 pm
Private dinner for 16 + Tuttle

Friday, October 17

16 participants
APE, 126 Main Street, downtown Northampton

9ish am – x
Participation: conversations, objects and exercises, group work

8 pm
Dinner party
P + Q, Northampton

Saturday, October 18

16 participants
APE, 126 Main Street, downtown Northampton

9ish am
optional breakfast, APE

10 am
Participation: conversations, objects and exercises, group work, studio visits

5:30 – 7 pm
Space opening
Community-wide reception, OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, Free
APE, 126 Main Street, downtown Northampton

Sunday, October 19

10 am Farewell breakfast, P + Q

Thanks to the funders of “X = ” including APE, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Smith College & the Smith College Museum of Art.

Venue > APE


1,200 square feet, ground floor, in a multi-performance arts center.