Arts and Sciences Symposium 11th June 2015
Emily has written about the Arts and Sciences Symposium in her June Blog Post. Below are some thoughts post-symposium from people who attended the full event and also took part in the final general discussion.
It is right to say that the main goal for a mathematician is to look for the truth, but I think this is not everything. Maths is also about looking for beauty and clarity. As a mathematician, I feel this whenever I see other mathematicians try different approaches to find new proofs for results which have already been proved and accepted for a long time.
Mashael Alhamd, PhD Mathematics, University of Liverpool
A really good outcome would be a circle of artists (composers and others?) and scientists (mathematicians and others), who get to know and appreciate each other, meet regularly and exchange ideas for mutual benefit. [...] What would be fun and possibly also useful is to have an artist talk about science and a scientist talk about art. [...] Doing this would analyse what remains of the science in the work of art, and more importantly, what is it that newly emerges through the artist's creativity.
Mathias Brust, Professor of Chemistry, University of Liverpool
The symposium offered a unique opportunity to participate in a discussion amongst a group of scientists, mathematicians and composers on topics that included field-specific knowledge as well as general debate on how our thought-processes and methods are at times at odds with each others whilst at times bearing remarkable similarities.
Zakiya Leeming, PhD Composition, Royal Northern College of Music
This is the first time I saw music talks, so it was very interesting to discover this kind of thing and the motivation behind this kind of music. All this was new for me!
Alexandre DeZotti, Research Associate in Pure Mathematics, University of Liverpool
I really enjoyed the symposium. The pieces I heard were highly accomplished and the scientific talks were a fascinating insight into those particular fields. [...] Inspiration, I think, is always best found in the most unexpected of areas.
Liam Carey, PhD Composition, University of Liverpool
Above anything, the session highlighted to me the difference in how scientists and artists approach and conduct their research. I believe both sides can learn from each other, and I intend to include a level of creativity into my work where possible, something which I may have neglected previously.
Alex Kesharvarzi, PhD Theoretical Physics, University of Liverpool
A mathematical process that is – to a certain extent – unpredictable, was something that I found creatively liberating. If I was to use this system as a compositional stimulus, I would then be able to dictate the conditions of a chaotic system, and as a result I would then be able to be compositionally omnipresent, whilst remaining faithful to the nature of the system. [...] Being able to integrate with those who study subjects different to my own is always valuable; ultimately, there are cognitive similarities between all academic disciplines, even if it is at the most rudimental and abstract level, which is something I find interesting and enjoy exploring in conversation.
Ben Parker, UG4 Composition, Royal Northern College of Music
The philosophical discussion afterwards was great: good maths ... interpretation, discovery and creation etc. [In music] you all follow your own path whereas in our case only a few do........I really enjoyed [it]!
Ebeneezer Tetsi, PhD Physics, University of Liverpool
As a result of the day I'm more interested in mixing with others and their research, it's [...] refreshing.
Aled Smith, PhD Composition, Royal Northern College of Music
Maths and music are not always entirely approachable, especially at their frontiers. It is therefore very encouraging to see people take an interest in mathematical ideas, and indeed, it is interesting to get a glimpse into contemporary music and the ideas behind it. ... This meeting certainly left me with food for thought.
Stephen Worsley, PhD Mathematics, University of Liverpool
It was interesting to hear the mathematicians/scientists views on art, the creation of art and the relationship they thought the originality of art had with the originality of mathematics. Several parallels between the subject areas were discussed which I found to be enlightening with my own thoughts on the relationship that mathematics and music share.
John Uren, UG2 Composition, Royal Northern College of Music