When the world becomes a little too real, Jesse Kornbluth suggests: “Let’s have some unreality. Some beauty. Some genius.”
I began yesterday by writing the President of the University of Virginia, a college that’s had no great interest in removing predatory males from campus, that it was too late for her to reform the school’s “rape culture” — our daughter would never apply there. I followed that by writing to the head of my daughter’s school, suggesting a meeting to advise parents which colleges were reasonably safe for its college applicants. I ended the day by watching a prosecutor with a perfect record in indicting police — he’s now 0 for 5 — fill the air with everything but answers to obvious questions. After a day like that — a day of heartache some of you may have also experienced — I thought: Let’s have some unreality, let’s have some beauty, some genius, something that might inspire us and our kids. And here it is…
Twenty years from now, someone will make a breakthrough in the arts, technology or design, and remark, “Well, when I was a kid, there was this book….”
He or she will mean “M.C. Escher Pop-Ups.”
It’s only 16 pages. By conventional standards, a wisp of a book. Really: a pamphlet.
But we do not judge Escher by conventional standards.
Only those who attempt the absurd will achieve the impossible.
And when we consider that this book takes his work into the third dimension, we — well, some of us, anyway — get excited. (To buy the book from Amazon, click here.
Are you really sure that a floor can’t also be a ceiling?
Maurits Cornelis Escher (1898-1972) was a draftsman whose exacting vision and precise technique led him to explore the relationship between art and mathematics. In 1922, he visited the Alhambra, a 14th Century castle in Granada, Spain; its intricate carvings and optical tricks inspired him to go deeper into mathematical creation. He’d go on to create 448 lithographs, woodcuts and wood engravings and more than 2,000 drawings and sketches, many of them mathematically-inspired — and to write so well on the subject that some academics considered him a research mathematician. (For more about Escher and more Escher books, click here.)
“The things I want to express are so beautiful and pure.”
M.C. Escher, on a flat page, is a contact high. As pop-ups? Hang on.
Originally published on HeadButler.com