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Exploring Science and Art

(4 customer reviews)

Exploring Science and Art: Discovering Connections between the nature of Science and the Science of Art is a venture of discovery. Author and retired science educator, Mary Kirsch Boehm, guides readers through an examination of science with an artistic eye, introducing an integrated and often overlooked view of the two disciplines.



ISBN 978-1-942483-89-2


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Meet the Author

" Mary Kirsch Boehm can detect the presence of an art museum from miles away, and she has done so during her travels around the world for many decades. Armed with art books, the science educator trekked from museum to museum through Europe for more than 40 years, and her passion for art and science has never diminished. Born in Lockport, New York, the retired science teacher has science degrees from both Buffalo State College and the University at Buffalo and is now a docent at the renowned Albright-Knox Art Museum and the Burchfield Penney Art Center in Buffalo, New York. "

What do Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso have in common? Can we learn about science by studying art? There are many connections just waiting to be discovered between the natural world and artistic techniques that have been used for centuries. Author and retired science educator Mary Kirsch Boehm systematically guides readers through a look at science with an artistic eye, introducing an integrated and often overlooked view of the two disciplines. By exploring the materials and techniques of art and the science behind them, Boehm reveals just how interconnected our world really is.





4 reviews for Exploring Science and Art

  1. Ellen R

    Mary Kirsch Boehm is a retired science teacher who now docents at art museums. The presence of this book says to me that the author discovered the amazing connection between science and art in her post-retirement career, and wants to share this knowledge with those who are still clinging to the notion that science is a more “serious” pursuit than art. In these days of dismissing the arts in favor of STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math). In fact, as Boehm points out, nearly every aspect of art involves science, from color theory to understanding how to build a sculpture to last or restore an old work of art.

    With this important topic, I wish Boehm would have thought more carefully about who her audience might be. At times, the writing is grade-school elementary (“atoms are very, very small”), and much of the time, the text glosses over a bunch of seemingly unrelated topics without following through in a later chapter. The author seems to think that by merely presenting the facts without context, the reader can draw their own conclusions.

    The other problem I had with this book is that there are no pictures of the art she describes. This is a real missed opportunity to point to specific elements in the works of art she describes that use the scientific principles she discusses.

    Finally, I need to point out that there is no mention of the performing arts in this book. I get that, it would have been a much longer book and involved an artistic area with which the author is not as familiar. But musicians, actors, scene designers, and dancers also use science, and if you’re trying to make a case, all the arts should be included.

  2. Joseph M

    I have mixed thoughts on this book. I think the content and topics are very good, and interesting. And make the author’s points well. Good descriptions. The author probably doesn’t need to add the essay style beginning and end. Or she could have used another method to relay the information. To me, this weakened the book a bit.

    The organization of the book would be greatly enhanced by adding images of the artwork, science, and items being discussed. Otherwise, it is a book about visual things without visuals.

    I think this book has the most potential as a guiding document to develop a script for a PBS series or documentary series.

  3. Annie B

    This is a layman-accessible examination of the intersection and interplay between the arts and sciences and how creativity is necessary and indelibly entwined with the pursuit of advances in both. It’s an academic work, written by a professional educator and as such, is exhaustively annotated. It’s not at all dry, however, and readers who are interested in the subject matter will find a great deal of well-presented information to ponder here.

    The subject matter is presented in a logical progression: from the larger overarching themes (interconnectedness and relationships between science and art and the similarities between methods of thinking) to specifics of materials & techniques, light and color, conservation (fascinating info here, including copious notes for further reading), and the nature of matter including biodiversity and weather, biology, and astronomy and how they’ve defined and informed art and science.

    This is a fascinating and information-dense work. It’s not light reading, by any stretch, but it is fascinating and well worth a look for readers interested in the subjects. It would make an excellent course instruction for wide-ranging subjects – a science-heavy book for artists/students, and a look at art with an artistic sensibility that will challenge STEM folks.

    Four and a half stars. It would be a good choice for public or university library acquisition or as a resource for related classroom instruction (at the post-secondary level). It’s admittedly a niche book, but very well done.

  4. Jennifer W

    This is a book all about science and art, just as the title reveals.

    Mary Kirsch Boehm says “At first, I have to admit, I viewed the two [science and art] as separate and never considered the possibility of connections between them. But gradually I learned that they did not exist in a vacuum and were indeed related and in many ways. For me, this was a different and very interesting approach, and it was one that added to my understanding and appreciation of science and art.”

    The writing is a little bland at times, I didn’t get a sense of the author’s excitement about the subject she is writing about. But I did find it interesting to learn about people in science and some artwork that I was unfamiliar with before I read the book. The book piqued my curiosity and I ended up looking up some things for even greater information. So at the end of the day, I learned some new things which is always a good thing.

    I think to enjoy this book you really need to be into both science AND art.

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