Dreams of Pythagoras

Michael Schultheis

November 5 - December 23, 2014

Winston Wächter Fine Art is pleased to announce Dreams of Pythagoras, our fifth solo exhibition with painter Michael Schultheis. Please join us for our opening reception on Wednesday, November 5, 6 – 8 pm.

In his latest exhibition, Michael Schultheis pays homage to Pythagoras of Samos (c. 570 BC – c. 495 BC), a Greek philosopher, mathematician, and founder of Pythagoreanism. Of these works, Schultheis says, “Pythagoras falls into a deep sleep and dreams of all the progenies of his original idea. These paintings are what he sees in the internal chalkboard of his mind.”

Schultheis’ gestural abstract paintings explore a range of blue tones from lapis lazuli to topaz found in the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas – all blues that Pythagoras would see on his voyages between Athens, Alexandria, and Syracuse. These hues and the equations found within the paintings are a visual representation of Pythagoras’ philosophy that mathematics interconnects everything within the experience of life. He explores this interconnectedness further through the use of a beautiful snail-like shape known as a limaçon. The geometry of the limaçon becomes a model for the relationship between equations, stories, philosophies, and events the artist is experiencing in his personal life. Heart-shaped, circling, and orbiting limaçons fill Schultheis’ canvas. The equations that produce these shapes are worked out throughout the composition. The elegant interior and exterior curvature of the limaçon is used to visually represent and convey three different stories that inspired this body of work. The first is Carl Jung’s philosophy on the continuum between the conscious and the unconscious mind. Schultheis takes this philosophy further by drawing from Garcia Lorca’s poem “Song of the Seven Hearted Boy.” The boy in the poem is born with seven hearts, but none are his own. In painting these limaçon models, Schultheis helps the boy recognize the continuum of consciousness, adjust his orbit, and find his heart. The third story explores the relationship between Achilles and Patroclus, represented as two limaçons circling around each other to find, and ultimately draw a new orbit together.

Trained in mathematics and economics, Michael Schultheis began painting after becoming captivated with the artistic mathematical notations he would see on the chalkboards of his professors. His work can be found in the collections of the Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA; United States Embassy, Athens, Greece & Bern, Switzerland; and the Mathematical Association of America, Washington DC among many others. Exhibitions of his works have been held at the Howard Hughes Institute in Chevy Chase, MD and at the National Academies of Sciences in Washington, D.C.

For inquiries please contact Judith Rinehart at gallery@winstonwachter.com or 206-652-5855.