Kaz Maslanka

Artist / Engineer
San Diego, California

"As a visual poet, my interest in correlating experience through language spawned my desire to study mathematics and physics. Over the last 34 years I have been pursuing my interest in using mathematics as a language for visual poetry. Mixing poetics in the structure of mathematics equations as well as visual art enables me to blend the aesthetics of art, poetry, science and mathematics. With phrases embedded in the mathematics equations, one can construct relationships between those phrases that can bring a linguistic richness to subjects that normally not use mathematics as a language, e.g. political, cultural, spiritual, etc. Most of my work from the last 7 years are expressions inspired by my practice of Korean Seon (Zen)"

24" x 24"
Duratrans digital print displayed in a lightbox

This mathematical visual poem is titled "ONE" and is supported by the mathematical concept that anything divided by itself is equal to one.

The Chinese character located in the middle of the number one means "Buddha's mind"

The border was made from an photograph I shot of a sunset during a flight over the the grand canyon in Arizona.

The star-field in the center of the work is a photo I shot in the dessert of California near Mt. Whitney showing the center of our galaxy between Scorpio and Sagittarius. My friend in the numerator was photographed crawling across the sidewalk near my home in San Diego.

Venerate your experience - not this!
24" x 24"
Duratrans digital print displayed in a lightbox

This mathematical visual poem is titled "Venerate Your Experience - not this!" and is an example of what I call a "Proportional Poem." This type of poem generally is in the form of "a is to b" as "d is to e". However, this mathematical poem is a special case because it starts in the form of a is to b as b is to a. The concepts mapped into this structure are a powerful excerpt taken out of the Buddhist sutra called the Heart Sutra: "Form is to Emptiness as Emptiness is to Form". The excerpt is first written as: "Form divided by Emptiness is equal to Emptiness divided by Form" --- then, we divide both side of the equation by "Form" and multiply both sides by "Emptiness" and get: "ONE = Emptiness squared divided by Form squared."