Ivars Peterson's MathTrek
Based in Spearfish, S.D., Termes has been painting on spheres for more than 30 years. His intriguing creations embody the notion of capturing complete worldstop, bottom, and all aroundon a spherical canvas.
Suppose, for example, that the ball he's inside is in a starkly geometric, cubical room. The room is defined by three sets of parallel lines. From his perspective inside the ball, these lines lead to six vanishing points. And the lines are curved. This six-point perspective, with the six vertices of an octahedron serving as the vanishing points, becomes the basis of his spherical paintings.
Termes has painted all sorts of scenes on the surface of spheres, including the interiors of famous buildings, many different geometric patterns, and various imaginary "dream" worlds (see http://www.termespheres.com/gallery1.html).
Termes has painted scenes on spheres of many different sizes. Most range from 13 inches to 24 inches in diameter. His largest "termesphere" started out as an orange, rotating Union 76 gas station sign, 7 1/2 feet in diameter, and ended up at the Wyoming Law Enforcement Academy in Douglas, Wyo.
Copyright © 2004 by Ivars Peterson
Dick Termes has a Web site featuring his artworks at http://www.termespheres.com/.
Keith, S. 2001. Dick Termes and his spheres. Math Horizons 9(September):11-15. Available at http://www.termespheres.com/math-horizons.html.
Peterson, I. 2002. Global views. Muse 6(September):42. Available at http://www.sciencenewsforkids.org/pages/puzzlezone/muse/muse0902.asp.
Seckel, A. 2004. Masters of Deception: Escher, Dalí & the Artists of Optical Illusion. New York: Sterling. See http://neuro.caltech.edu/~seckel/mod/.
Termes, D. 1993. The geometries behind my spherical paintings. In The Visual Mind: Art and Mathematics, M. Emmer, ed. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT press.
Information about the touring exhibit "New Math: Contemporary Art and the Mathematical Instinct" can be found at http://www.d.umn.edu/tma/tournewmath.htm.