Math ART Fun (Oh Yes. It IS!)

Math ART Fun (Oh Yes. It IS!)

Wednesday • June 23rd
5:00-6:30 PM

Fees are a sliding scale from $15 to $30.
Student rate is $10.
For financial assistance, Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
to request the subsidized rate or a scholarship (free).  Two scholarships are available for this class based on stated need.

Math and ART? No, it is not a strange combination. And NO! We will not be solving quadratic equations or using the Pythagorean Theorem (this time!)

Artists through the years have relied heavily on huge mathematical concepts like proportions, the Golden Ratio, symmetry, repetition in design, and on and on. As early as the 400’s BC, Plato studied the solid figures such as the cube, but even before his time, math served as a major inspiration for many varied artistic elements.  

Math ART Fun (Oh Yes. It IS!)Math ART Fun (Oh Yes. It IS!)This “hands-on” class will explore two main mathematical ideas: the Mobius Strip and design resulting from repetition. With the instruction from two Southern Oregon Guild artists and experienced teachers (Ryan Forsythe and Donna Parrish), participants will be involved with creative play and exploration.

Using only paper strips, tape, and scissors, Donna will lead activities with Mobius Strips. Surprise and delight will abound as we cut through the math and investigate the results of our small effort.

Ryan will share some ideas surrounding mandalas.  Using stiff paper (or lightweight cardboard), participants will create their own pattern, and then use simple mathematical ideas to explore the result as we trace that pattern around a particular point. Again, the finished products are surprising and with a little coloring and a good dose of imagination, the designs can be beautiful.

For the Mobius Strip activity, participants will need six paper strips. (The paper can be notebook paper cut lengthwise, wrapping paper, paper bags, cash register tape, or any paper that is easy to cut. You may find notebook paper is a little short to work with since we will be making loops with it. Legal sized paper is a little easier to manipulate.)

To be fully prepared, you will need six paper strips that measure about 3 inches wide. You will also need tape – it does not matter what kind (clear, masking, duct, etc.), scissors, and a pencil or marker.

Math ART Fun (Oh Yes. It IS!)For the mandala-inspired activity, you will need a piece of plain paper (standard printer paper works fine), a ruler, a plate and a mug or small bowl, and a pencil. Colored pencils, crayons, or markers are optional.

Presenter Bios

Donna Parrish has been a mathematics educator for almost 50 years and has worked at all levels from middle school through graduate school. She currently serves as a mathematics consultant and teacher trainer for the US Department of Education and for several states’ high school equivalency programs. Her lifelong career focus has been to make mathematics both accessible and enjoyable for all.  Many people think of math and art as stemming from two distinct hemispheres of the brain, but the foundation of Donna’s work is  that the hemispheres are inextricably linked and they support and enhance each other.  Further, it is her belief that the multiple challenges faced by modern society demand mathematics to be much more than the reproduction of step-by-step procedures. Instead, emerging mathematics relies on creativity in problem solving, the ability to see beyond what is explicitly stated, and the capacity to discover how factors are related. Much of Donna’s teaching has involved assisting instructors in exercising their own creative abilities to help them unleash that of their students.

Ryan Forsythe is an experienced school administrator who has worked in the fields of elementary and post-secondary education. He recently served as the instructor at Rogue Community College’s Adult Learning Center in Kerby, where he assisted students in earning their GED in Math (among other subjects). He is also a skilled author and publisher with an MFA from San Diego State University. Ryan is the founder and editor for Left Fork, a small press based in Southwest Oregon with a primary goal of creating books that celebrate the people and culture here. One example is our local annual literary journal Cobra Lily which many Illinois Valley residents will be familiar with. Though his art is multi-faceted, in this workshop, Ryan will present some of the mathematical ideas behind his “Slugdalas”--banana slug mandalas, of course!

Event Properties

Event Date 06-23-2021 05:00 pm
Event End Date 06-23-2021 06:30 pm
Registration Start Date 06-03-2021 05:00 pm
Capacity 20
Available place 18
Cut off date 06-22-2021 11:55 pm
Class Fee Sliding scale from $15 to $35. Student rate is $10