Robert Fathauer's Biography

Robert Fathauer has had a life-long interest in art but studied physics and mathematics in college, going on to earn a PhD from Cornell University in electrical engineering. For several years he was a researcher at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. Long a fan of M.C. Escher, he began designing his own tessellations with lifelike motifs in the late 1980s. In 1993, he founded a business, Tessellations, to produce puzzles based on his designs. Over time, Tessellations has grown to include mathematics manipulatives, polyhedral dice, and books.

Dr. Fathauer's mathematical art has always been coupled with recreational math explorations. These include Escheresque tessellations, fractal tilings, and iterated knots. After many years of creating two-dimensional art, he has recently been building ceramic sculptures inspired by both mathematics and biological forms. Another interest of his is photographing mathematics in natural and synthetic objects, particularly tessellations. In addition to creating mathematical art, he’s strongly committed to promoting it through group exhibitions at both the Bridges Conference and the Joint Mathematics Meetings.

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