The paintings are inspired by the ancient Greek mathematician Euclid of Alexandria, also known as The Father of Geometry. Euclid wrote the remarkable treatise Optics (280 BC), in which he documents his discovery of the geometry of vision. In this body of work, I explore this literature on Optics and formulate my own narrative of how I “see” - both geometrically as well as symbolically. In addition to Optics, Euclid wrote Elements, a treatise of 13 books on geometry and mathematics. In 800 AD, this teatise was translated into Arabic by Euclid’s student Proclo, and then into Latin by the English monk Adelard of Bath in 1120.
These paintings are my own palimpsests or manuscripts - discoveries as well as reinterpretations of the individual geometric framework of vision as well as the collective and resonant geometry of relationships. Through them, I also pay homage to the universal and timeless treasures Euclid gave to all mathematicians and artists.
My principal areas of interest at present include the ancient Greek mathematicians Euclid of Alexandria, also known as The Father of Geometry, and Menelaus of Alexandria, the first to discover spherical trigonometry. Euclid wrote the remarkable treatise Optics (280 BC), in which he documents his discovery of the geometry of vision. In his treatise Sphaerica (98 AD), Menelaus advanced trigonometry by developing a spherical triangle with three arcs of great circles on the surface of a sphere.
In these paintings, I explore the ideas in Optics and Sphaerica, and formulate my own personal narrative with the geometric forms.
Schultheis' most recent show references Euclid, the father of geometry. Borrowing from the Greek mathematician's treatise on perspective that reveals, among other things, how the shapes of cylinders and cones change when viewed from different angles, Schultheis gives concrete form to a mathematician's mindscape. For all of Schultheis' interest in mathematic notions, the canvases themselves remain largely sensual, with fog-like swathes of white partially obscuring brightly colored squiggles that suggest marine life or the lively movement of water. Read Full Essay →
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