The Best Math Art on the Web

Math ArtThough often separated in more formal academic settings, both math and art are fundamentally related in all actuality. Each discipline supports and plays an integral role in understanding and appreciating the other. So, whether you’ve come to this page to start your investigation of the interdisciplinary connections, or to integrate these two fields to enhance student engagement in and understanding of math, Best Online College has compiled a wealth of resources to guide you along the way.

On our list, you’ll find an array of websites compiled help you understand the relationship between art and math. Integrate these connections into your own learning and teaching (no matter your level of mathematical understanding or artistic ability) and just explore some really cool math art on the web. Many of these resources are highly inspirational.

General Math Art ResourcesThe Golden RatioTessellationsFractalsPolyhedra
Perspective DrawingsBraids and KnotsPaper FoldingArchitectureMandalasCrop Circles

General Math-Art Resources

  • Mathematics in Art and Architecture is a course created by Professor Aslaksen of the National University of Singapore. The site contains resources for educators, links to organizations, and other math-art websites. In addition to being a great spot to search for resources, it also offers downloadable lecture notes as PowerPoints.
  • Math and the Art of M.C. Escher is a wiki dedicated explaining the mathematics behind MC Escher’s art. This wiki provides examples of Escher’s work (sorted by category) as well as activities for teachers and students seeking to connect their mathematical understandings with artistic projects.
  • The Bridges Organization for Art and Mathematics has been hosting a yearly conference that showcases a gallery of visual art, working sessions with practitioners and artists who are crossing mathematics-arts boundaries and evening musical or theatrical events. This site is a must-visit for those serious about interdisciplinary work in art and math.
  • Mathematical Imagery is a website ran by the American Mathematical Society. They offer a great collection of math art that is catalogued in 29 albums with 388 files to date. this site does not delve into the math behind the art, it is a great source of visuals for what can be accomplished by using math in art.
  • Cool Math 4 Kids – Geometry and Math Art provides basics of tessellations, polyhedra and fractals and the cool artwork you can make with them in kid-friendly language. This is a great resource for helping kids understand how to use math in art and how to begin applying it in their own creations.
  • Linking Math with Art through the Elements of Design is a downloadable document that introduces students to the basic principles of design and geometry through activities explained in the document. This document is mostly oriented toward students in elementary and jr.high schools, with some adaptations for working with high school students.
  • Math Art Fun is an online store and gallery of mathematical art. You can browse topics including tessellations, polyhedra, fractals, anamorphic art, kaleidoscopes, M. C. Escher, Origami, quilting and architecture. Although commercial in intention, this site offers a great resource for all ages.

The Golden Ratio in Math and Art

  • Fibonacci Numbers and the Golden Section in Art, Architecture, and Music is one of the most interesting math-art resources we’ve found online. The Golden Ratio has made intentional and unintentional appearances in everything from elaborate and famous works of art, architecture, and music, to everyday buildings and tools. This resource is a must for any aspiring artist or mathematician.
  • Golden Mean Art features examples of the Golden Mean in different art materials, such as modern photography, colored pencil, and ink drawings. Another must for any artist.
  • Golden Mean – Math Integration features a great hands-on lesson that incorporates math, art, and technology. Lesson resources are provided, as well as examples of student work. It’s designed for high school students but can easily be catered younger grades.
  • The Math Forum offers a clear, concise explanation for beginners about the Golden Ratio, the Golden Rectangle and the relation between the Fibonacci Sequence and the Golden Ratio. This doesn’t show art examples but it is a great place to begin to understand the golden ration.
  • Nature by Numbers presents a series of animations illustrating various mathematic principles, beginning with a breathtaking animation of the Fibonacci sequence. Then it moves on to the Golden and Angle Ratios, the Delaunay Triangulation and Voronoi Tessellations

Tessellation Math-Art

  • Interactive Tessellate! has an interactive tessellation activity that will have you creating tessellations for hours. It’s intuitive to use and contains clear directions on how to use the platform. For educators, they provide curriculum context and resources.
  • Totally Tessellated explores the history of tessellations, before, after, and including M.C. Escher’s work. Learn what you need to know about the history and techniques behind tessellation artwork and see what both mathematicians and artists have done to explore the complex nature of tessellations.
  • What is a Tessellation? from the Math Forum, this page provides an illustrated explanation of what a tessellation is in mathematical terms.
  • Tessellations.org features information about all aspects of tessellations. We have their history, do-it-yourself tessellation lessons, and galleries of examples by school students, guest artists, the webmasters Seth and David, and of course M. C. Escher, the pioneer of the art. It’s entirely-kid friendly in its examples, and the site is willing to post your students’ tessellation projects on its “School Gallery” page.

Fractal Math-Art

  • A Fractals Unit for Elementary and Middle School Students is a fractals site is for kids, to help them understand what the weird pictures are all about – that it’s math – and that it’s fun. It helps educators to know how to adapt  math curricula to reflect the current field of mathematics.
  • Fractal Foundation is a non-profit organization that uses the beauty of fractals to inspire interest in Science, Math and Art. Explore fractals in a manner that best suits your learning needs.
  • The Topic: Fractals offers an exploration of fractals to students fifth grade an up. This site features lessons and web resources provided for teachers trying to make fractals interesting and accessible to their students.
  • Fractals and Proportional Reasoning is an essay written by Jane H. Fraser at Pittsburgh Classical Academy. She discusses the uses of the art of fractals to teach middle school students proportional reasoning. This essay includes a detailed unit plan for teachers to make fractals more than just cool math art.
  • Fractal World Gallery offers an enormous collection of digital fractal art on the web: hundreds of high quality images of fractal designs are available.
  • Fractals in Nature takes you through a journey of geometry of fractals as seen in nature and provides stunning images to illustrate the association of math, art and the natural world.

Polyhedra Math-Art

  • Classroom Polyhedra Activities are offered by George Hart. He offers activities range in levels of complexity and skills required for construction.
  • Investigations with Polyhedra contains a set of activities that solidifies geometry concepts to make them more concrete. This well-developed unit plan is appropriate for students in grades 7-12.
  • Polyhedra and Art outlines the historical presence of polyhedra in Pre, Italian, German, Post Renaissance and twentieth century movements.

Perspective Drawings Math-Art

  • Geometry and Art: Perspective Drawing is a high school geometry classroom lesson outline designed to teach the concept of lines and planes in space through art. This lesson plan is provided to by the Idaho State Department of Education and is available for use by students and teachers.
  • The Geometry of Perspective Drawing on the Computer is published by the University of Utah department of mathematics and appropriate for those in high school mathematics and beyond. This article investigates the mathematics behind computer programs that create perspective drawings.
  • Perspective Drawing suggests some simple drawing activities to explore the relationship between the vanishing point and parallel lines for math students. Links are also provided for students to identify parallel lines and similar figures in some classic pieces of art.

Braids and Knots Math-Art

  • Algorithms, Braids and Kolam Figures uses algorithms to make braid patterns to teach properties of math to elementary school students. Resources provided here will help you incorporate math into something many of your students are willing to create as crafts.
  • Knot Plot is a visual exploration of mathematical knots. It explores knots and knot tying from a mathematical perspective. This site contains simple and complex knot tying examples and activities for students. Activities are appropriate for high school students through higher-level mathematics. Knot-tying activities are mostly digital simulations.
  • Untangling the Mathematics of Knots offers a plethora of math-related knot tying activities. Lessons primarily involve hands-on, rope-tying tasks. This creates a fun learning experience for exploring the mathematics of knots with K-12 students needing concrete examples.

Paper Folding Math-Art

  • Modular Mania is Meenakshi Mukerji’s origami art site. He is a master of modular origami and he shares galleries showcasing a ton of impressive examples. these include polyhedra and other designs with clear connections to mathematics.
  • Origami and Math provides an overview of how to make the connection between the art of paper folding and mathematics for teachers and students with activities ranging from basic to complex.
  • Paper Folding Geometry explains the geometry principles behind Origami and helpfully connects paper folding activities to key concepts in geometry. This site provides origami activities that incorporate the teaching of the geometry behind the trade.
  • Origami Tessellations is blog dedicated to merging modular origami with tessellation artwork and other elements of geometric design. Explore patterns, photos and explanations of the crossover of different approaches to math art here.

Architecture Math-Art

  • Geometry in Art and Architecture starts in Egypt and traces the evolution of western art and architecture as it correlates with mathematics. With lots of pictures and examples along the way, this site moves chronologically from the Egyptian pyramids to the intersection of math, art and architecture today.
  • Math-Kitechture aims to help students use architecture to figure out math. Lessons incorporate computer-aided design and work submitted by students can be displayed in the online gallery.
  • Perfect Buildings: The Maths of Modern Architecture teaches the mathematical ideas and display of mathematics behind modern architecture. This article explores the existence of art in the most groundbreaking and modern works of architecture.

Mandala Math-Art

  • Explore Mandala provided by the Rubin Museum of art is an easy to use, interactive tool to create fabulous looking mandalas. This Flash-based program allows you to customize your own Mandalas. Finished products can be printed for decoration or mathematical analysis.
  • Geometry and Art: Mandala is another geometry lesson plan designed for high school students that teaches geometric modeling through the properties of circles and symmetry of mandalas.
  • The Mandala Project is dedicated to promoting unity and diversity through mandala artwork. Though not specifically math focused, the gallery on this site has over a thousand examples of mandalas and is a great place to submit student work for display.
  • Radial Design combines symmetry and radial design into a basic mandala construction lesson plan. Student examples of finished products are provided. This lesson was designed for middle school math classrooms, but adaptations for elementary and high school classrooms are provided as links.

Crop Circle Math-Art

  • Euclidean Geometry of Crop Circles summarizes Gerald Hawkins’ work on crop circles and their relationship to Euclidean Geometry and diatonic ratios. It’s an in-depth look at geometry and the manner in which research and discovery in mathematics is still a necessary part of education.
  • Pi Appears in Crop Circle is an article published by the mathematics magazine, Plus. It specifies the mathematical significance of a crop circle that encodes the number for pi out to ten digits. This article has the potential to be a highly engaging and interesting way to start an investigation of pi for elementary to high school math students.
  • Temporary Temples is an online image library of crop circles. It is one of the best crop circle sites online.Pictures are for those looking to tie examples into their work in mathematics.

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