Connections between Art and Calculus in Peabody Essex Museum Trip

Margaret Sparicio '16

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This past Friday, Mrs. Weyman’s senior calculus class accompanied Mrs. Marge’s junior and senior art class on a fun-filled field trip to the Peabody Essex Museum to see the limited edition Alexander Calder exhibit. Mrs. Marge’s art class will be doing a sculpture project later in the year based on the work of Alexander Calder. This trip allowed the art students to start brainstorming ideas on what their projects. The calculus class went on the trip to better understand of the mechanics of the physical aspects of Calder’s works.

This exhibit features abstract mobiles and sculptures, each personally designed by Calder himself. Calder’s modernized sculptures feature a wide variety of shapes, lines, and colors to create an extremely avant garde perspective. Calder uses a combination of soft and organic shapes strung together with sharp lines and angles to create geometric masterpieces.

Art student Rylee Booth 16 said, “I really enjoyed going on the field trip with the art class. My favorite part of the trip  was when we got to build our own model sculptures using elements similar to Andrew Calder’s materials. We worked in teams to come up with abstract mobile sculptures that look similar to Alexander Calder’s.”

The cross-curricular dimensions to the class enriched both the calculus and art students. All art students know that art begins with creating lines and shapes, and calculus students understand how to measure and predict their movement.

 

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