Margaret Kepner

Independent Artist
Washington, DC
I enjoy exploring the possibilities for conveying ideas in new ways, primarily visually. I have a background in mathematics, which provides me with a never-ending supply of subject matter. My lifelong interest in art gives me a vocabulary and references to utilize in my work. I particularly like to combine ideas from seemingly different areas. I coined the term “visysuals” to describe what I do, meaning the “visual expression of systems” through attributes such as color, geometric forms, and patterns. My creative process involves moving back and forth between a math concept that intrigues me and the creation of visual images that interpret that concept in interesting ways.
Latin Fandango I
50 x 50 cm
Archival Inkjet Print
2016
This piece is based on a set of Mutually Orthogonal Latin Squares (MOLs) and utilizes visual elements evoking a traditional ‘Fans’ quilt pattern. A Latin Square of order n is an array of numbers, usually from 1 to n, arranged so that every number occurs exactly once in each row and column. For n = 7, a set of six Latin Squares can be found that are mutually orthogonal (independent). The values in the Latin Squares control the appearance of each small ‘quilt square’ in the design by defining the fan shape, selecting the colors in the fan, and determining the gray shades in the background areas. Because of the orthogonality of the Latin Squares, each of the 49 fans has a unique shape, stripe color combination, and background shading.
Latin Fandango II
50 x 50 cm
Archival Inkjet Print
2016
This is a companion piece to the previous work, based on the same six Latin Squares. The logic of the visual relationships is reversed, however. For example, in Latin Fandango I, the fan in row 3, column 4 has a size 1 outer-edge (smallest) and a size 7 inner-edge (largest) making it the thinnest fan in the design. In Fandango II, the corresponding fan is the thickest one, with a size 7 outer-edge and a size 1 inner-edge. Similar reversals occur in the rules by which the gray shades and colors are determined. The overall arrangement of the fans is a traditional quilt pattern. The four fans in the upper-left corner have a pinwheel-like relationship, which is repeated throughout the design. In Fandango I, the pinwheel direction is reversed.