Winston Wächter Fine Art, New York is pleased to announce Venn Luminosity, a poetic new series of large-scale acrylic paintings and bronze sculptures by Michael Schultheis. Drawing on the concept of a Venn diagram in which two circles overlap, Schultheis uses mathematics to tell stories of human relationships.
In his practice of Analytical Expressionism, Schultheis demonstrates how mathematical relationships can be used as a lens to view and understand human connections. His paintings depict geometric forms alongside their written equations. Overlapping and intersecting circles represent the space between two people or the areas in which two lives overlap. The layered forms and formulas meld together to create rich compositions that at times resemble the Renaissance ceiling paintings by Tiepolo or luminous Romantic works of Turner. The paintings bridge a gap between viewers who are not used to seeing mathematical forms in art and mathematicians who can imagine the artful forms of equations, connecting math and art in an immediate manner.
Schultheis expands on the ideas explored in his paintings through bronze sculptures. Using the lost-wax casting process of antiquity, he creates simple, elegant forms based on a geometric polar curve called a limaçon. The limaçon has an interior loop and an exterior loop, which the artist uses to represent a person’s interior and exterior. Schultheis embraces the three-dimensionality of sculpture, which allows viewers to walk around it and see it in space. He likens this movement to “the dance we all do with people dear to us” as we adjust and recalibrate over time, constantly moving closer and apart. Through the visualization of mathematics in painting and sculpture, Venn Luminosity encourages viewers to consider the space and light we give one another as we move through life.
Michael Schultheis is a Seattle-based painter and sculptor whose abstract works are strongly influenced by his background in mathematics and economics. Schultheis received his B.A. in Honors Economics from Washington State University, and his M.S. in Labor Economics from Cornell University. He has presented work in over 60 solo exhibitions across the country. His work can be found in the collections of the Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA; United States Embassy, Athens, Greece & Bern, Switzerland; and the Mathematical Association of America, Washinton D.C., among many others.