Three Mathematical Sculptures for the Mathematikon

Tom Verhoeff and Koos Verhoeff
Proceedings of Bridges 2016: Mathematics, Music, Art, Architecture, Education, Culture (2016)
Pages 105–110 Regular Papers


Three stainless steel sculptures, designed by Dutch mathematical artist Koos Verhoeff, were installed at the new Mathematikon building of Heidelberg University. Lobke consists of six conical segments connected into a single convoluted strip. One side is polished, the other side is matte (blasted), to emphasize the two-sided nature of the strip. The shape derives from an Euler cycle on the octahedron. Balancing Act is a figure-eight knot, made from 16 polished triangular beam segments, 4 longer and 12 shorter segments. As a freestanding object it balances on a single short segment. Each beam runs parallel to one of the four main diagonals of a cube. Hamilton Cycle on Football is a Hamilton cycle on the traditional football (soccer ball), constructed from 60 matte square beams. Mathematicians know the traditional football as a truncated icosahedron, consisting of 12 pentagons and 20 hexagons, giving rise to 60 vertices.