Eternal Golden Braid by Nicholas Mee

Total Eclipse by Nicholas Mee

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Intersections: Henry Moore and Stringed Surfaces
From 5 April to 20 June 2012
The Royal Society, London


The exhibition is a partnership between the Isaac Newton Institute in Cambridge, the Henry Moore Foundation, the Science Museum and the Royal Society and explores the inspirational encounter with the nineteenth century mathematical stringed surfaces of Théodore Olivier and their influence on the work of the young Henry Moore.

I was asked by the curator Barry Phipps to produce three animations related to string theory and Calabi-Yau manifolds for the exhibition. String theory predicts that the universe has ten spacetime dimensions. To make contact with the four spacetime dimensions that we are aware of, string theorists propose that six spatial dimensions might be wrapped up on an extremely tiny length scale, much smaller than an atomic nucleus. The properties of this manifold would then determine the properties of the particles and forces that we witness in our macroscopic world. The most suitable manifolds for such a compactification scheme are known as Calabi-Yau manifolds.

A torus with a torus knot formed of golden beads wrapped around.
The torus is the only compact
two-dimensional Calabi-Yau manifold.
Animation copyright Nicholas Mee.

K3 Surface by Nicholas Mee

A projection of a six-dimensional Calabi-Yau manifold.
The quintic hypersurface in complex projective four-space.
Animation copyright Nicholas Mee.

Torus Knot by Nicholas Mee

A projection of a four-dimensional Calabi-Yau manifold
known as a K3 surface.
Animation copyright Nicholas Mee.

Calabi-Yau Manifold by Nicholas Mee
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