Artist dares to integrate math, art

Joelle Cheek

Combining mathematics and art into one, studio gallery director fifth-year senior Justin Alpern is a jack of all trades.

Alpern is a student, artist and a studio art major with a minor in art history.  

His most recent artwork premiered May 14 in the Thesis Exhibition titled

Drawn to Linfield by the art program, Alpern had no choice in pursuing art. The artist gene runs in his family with his mother, father and grandfather all possessing artistic skills, he said.

Alpern said he considers himself to be a conceptual artist and enjoys working with different media including video and photography.

“It’s my job to break your conception of what you expect,” Alpern said.

His vision for his art splits from the mold because he is inspired by the Fibonacci sequence of numbers.

“It’s inherent to the nature of our body,” Alpern said. “The sequence for example, represents the ratio between the segments of our fingers.”

His artwork consists of the mathematic formula with the golden rectangle: a rectangle constructed using the golden ratio, which when combined references the golden spiral, he said.

Also in the show are three books, wallpaper made from individual frames of a video  and the video itself. Each page in the books represent a second in time where the frames are stretched out in the ratio of the golden rectangle.

Alpern employs his artistic vision by working in the Fine Art Gallery in the James F. Miller Fine Arts Center.

His job duties include hanging up the artwork and constructing and setting up the different installations required for the variety of shows passing through the gallery.

Alpern said he enjoys his work because he is allowed to collaborate with interesting artists and professors.

His talents in different media have allowed him to venture into the business world as well. He mostly offers services in Web design, video and photography  to other artists or

“I want to make the concept come alive in a meaningful and visually interesting way,” Alpern said.

Alpern also has made an impact on his fellow students. Junior Laura Johnson said she likes the variety of mediums in his work.

“He likes to bring a lot of different worlds into his work,” Johnson said.

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