Maria Mannone

Subject Expert, Freelance Artist
Department of Mathematics and Informatics, University of Palermo Italy

My research uses the language of categories to compare forms and growth processes in nature and to transform them into music and musical variations. Here, I tried to use categories not as a language, but as an inspiration source in itself. A simple, but fundamental, concept as "duality," can be re-read in light of classical artistic themes.

32 x 24 cm
Free-hand pencil drawing on paper

What do you get reversing all arrows? This surrealistic image is inspired by the duality in categories, with some references to Ancient Greece and the Baroque theme of Vanitas. Reversing arrows, a limit (a generalization of the product) becomes a colimit (a generalization of the sum). Limits and colimits appear in a book, in the (lady's) eyes and earrings (of the lady and her mirror image), and in the hourglasses. The lady is looking at herself in the mirror, which reverses arrows, facial expressions, hairstyles, and flow of time. Lady's left hand gets inside the mirror, and vice versa. Tragic masks are recursively seen as 2-cells; the sad mask is the dual of the happy one, and there are references to braids, equalizers, and coequalizers.