A USC LIBRARIES DISCOVERY FELLOW PROJECTAT THE INTERSECTION OF MATHEMATICS, ART,AND LIBRARIES
In 1926, mathematician Karl Menger discovered the rstthree-dimensional ractal, which came to be called, in hishonor, the Menger Sponge. Eighty years later Dr. JeannineMosely, an MIT-trained engineer, built a model o thisextraordinary object using 66,000 business cards.Now Dr. Mosely has discovered a relative o Menger’soriginal ractal—the Mosely Snowfake Sponge. USCLibraries Discovery Fellow Margaret Wertheim and Dr.Mosely are leading the USC community in constructingthis unique mathematical orm out o 49,000 businesscards. This is the rst time in the history o the world, andperhaps the universe, that this wondrous ractal object willbe brought into being.These instructions describe how to assemble a levelone Mosely Snowfake Sponge, a smaller variant o thelevel three ractal under construction at USC. Additionalinormation as well as instructional videos are availableonline at
ABOUT JEANNINE MOSELY
A graduate o MIT with a Ph.D. in electrical engineeringand computer science, Mosely has pursued a career inthree-dimensional modeling sotware. She is well-knownor her Business Card Menger Sponge, a large-scale,participatory, origami project that engaged hundredso people across the USA. Mosely believes that oldingorigami structures is a way o giving lie to mathematicaltheorems and ormulae. Her recent work ocuses onolding curved lines in modular orms and tessellations.She designed and developed the methods or creating theMosely Snowfake Sponge.
ABOUT MARGARET WERTHEIM
Margaret Wertheim is a science writer, curator, and theauthor o books on the cultural history o physics andperception. In 2003, she and her twin sister Christineounded the Institute For Figuring, a Los Angeles-basedorganization that explores the poetic and aestheticdimensions o science and mathematics. In 2011, shebecame the USC Libraries inaugural Discovery Fellow. Hermost recent book—
Physics on the Fringe: Smoke Rings,Circlons, and Alternative Theories of Everything
—waspublished in October 2011 by Walker & Co.
ABOUT THE USC LIBRARIES DISCOVERY FELLOWSHIP
Dean Catherine Quinlan established the DiscoveryFellowship in 2011 to encourage students and scholarsto engage library collections in inventive and surprisingways. As the libraries’ rst Discovery Fellow, MargaretWertheim has curated The Marine Sublime—an event thatexplored the relationship among art, marine biology, andrare scientic works in the libraries’ special collections—and a discussion and workshop that investigatedthe mathematical character o Lewis Carroll’s
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
. With Jeannine Mosely, she isleading the Snowfake Sponge project at USC.