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Escher and the Droste effect. Public talk by Hendrik Lenstra

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Speaker: 
Hendrik Willem Lenstra
Affiliation: 
Universiteit Leiden / MPIM
Date: 
Wed, 2016-12-14 18:00 - 19:00
Location: 
MPIM Lecture Hall

In 1956, the Dutch graphic artist M.C. Escher made an unusual lithograph with the title `Print Gallery‘. It shows a young man viewing a print in an exhibition gallery. Amongst the buildings depicted on the print, he sees paradoxically the very same gallery that he is standing in. A lot is known about the way in which Escher made his lithograph. It is not nearly as well known that it contains a hidden `Droste effect‘, or infinite repetition; but this is brought to light by a mathematical analysis of the studies used by Escher. On the basis of this discovery, a team of mathematicians at Leiden produced a series of hallucinating computer animations. These show, among others, what happens inside the mysterious spot in the middle of the lithograph that Escher left blank.

Exhibition "Women of Mathematics throughout Europe" at MPIM opening on November 10th

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The exhibition "Women of Mathematics throughout Europe" will be on public display at the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics from November 10 to December 23, 2016. This touring exhibition, whose starting point is the 7th European Congress of Mathematics held in July 2016 in Berlin, features the portrays of thirteen female mathematicians, sharing their experience, thus serving as role models to encourage young women to enter mathematics, a field where women are still largely underrepresented. The exhibition will be launched with the:

Opening Event

Date/time: November 10th, 2016, 18:00h
Place: Max Planck Institute for Mathematics, Vivatsgasse 7, Bonn

"Cannons at Sparrows". Hirzebruch lecture by Günter M. Ziegler on Wednesday, November 2

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Speaker: 
Günter M. Ziegler
Affiliation: 
Freie Universität Berlin
Date: 
Wed, 2016-11-02 18:30 - 19:30
Location: 
University Club Bonn

The story told in this lecture starts with an innocuous little geometry problem, posed in a September 2006 blog entry by R. Nandakumar, an engineer from Calcutta, India: "Can you cut every polygon into a prescribed number of convex pieces that have equal area and equal perimeter?" This little problem is a "sparrow", tantalizing, not as easy as one could perhaps expect, and Recreational Mathematics: of no practical use.

"Euler, Riemann, Hirzebruch" - Special Talk by Sir Michael Atiyah on Friday, October 7

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On Friday, Oct. 7, at 3:30 p.m., Professor Michael Atiyah (University of Edinburgh) will give a talk on "Euler, Riemann, Hirzebruch" at the MPIM. Sir Michael Atiyah was a close friend of the MPI's founding director, Professor Friedrich Hirzebruch. The talk will be understandable also to a general audience.

EMS Prize for Geordie Williamson

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Geordie Williamson, advanced researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics, has received one of the this year's prestigious EMS prizes for outstanding young researchers. The prize was awarded „for his fundamental contributions to representation theory of Lie algebras and algebraic groups, for example, with the elegant proof of Soergel’s conjecture on bimodules associated to Coxeter groups and the counter-examples to expected bounds in Lusztig’s conjectured character for rational representations of algebraic groups.“ His results include proofs and re-proofs of some long-standing conjectures, as well as spectacular counterexamples to the expected bounds in others. The prize was awarded during the 7th European Congress of Mathematics held from July 18-22, 2016 in Berlin.

Pavel Mnev awarded 2016 André Lichnerowicz Prize in Poisson Geometry

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Pavel Mnev, an Advanced Researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics from 2014-2016, has been awarded the 2016 André Lichnerowicz Prize in Poisson Geometry. The biennial award is given for outstanding work by young mathematicians in Poisson Geometry.

Pavel Mnev received his Ph.D. in 2008 from the Steklov Mathematical Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg under the direction of the mathematical physicist Ludwig Faddeev. Mnev held a postdoctoral position at the University of Zurich, before coming to the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics in Bonn in 2014. This fall, he has moved to a faculty position at the University of Notre Dame. His research interests are in mathematical physics, in particular in the interactions of quantum field theory with topology, homological/homotopical algebra, and supergeometry.

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