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Hidden Harmony

, 160 pages

9 color photos, 1 halftone, 14 line drawings, 28 color plates

June 2008



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Hidden Harmony

The Connected Worlds of Physics and Art

Most "art and science" books focus on the science of perspective or the psychology of perception. Hidden Harmony does not. Instead, the book addresses the surprising common ground between physics and art from a novel and personal perspective. Viewing the two disciplines as creative processes, J.R.Leibowitz supplements existing and original research with illustrations to demonstrate that physics an d art share guiding aesthetics and compositional demands and to show how eachspeaks meaningfully to the other.

Hidden Harmony is the first serious look at what art and physics, as creative processes, have in common. Without assuming a background either in art or physics, the author widens our experience and understanding of both domains by exploring how concepts such as balance and re-balance, coherence and unity, and symmetry and broken symmetry affect and are affected by artistic vision and scientific principle. He reveals shared themes and understandings in each field and adroitly illustrates the parallels between the strategies guiding the dabs of color and layers of images in a work of art and those guiding the assembly of physical evidence into models of the physical world.

Featuring examples of paintings and sculptures and complementary examples of physical concepts, this contemplative work helps us see art and physics as artists and physicists do.

J. R. Leibowitz is an emeritus professor of physics and former chairman of the art department at the Catholic University of America. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society.

" Hidden Harmony is a very engaging, well written and beautifully illustrated book. I highly recommend it."

"The first thing I noticed when I picked up Hidden Harmony was its excellent production quality and aesthetics... The next thing that attracted me to the book was Leibowitz's impeccable taste... He writes extremely well, conveying his convictions in an erudite manner totally devoid of snobbery."

"An original perspective on the relation between physics and art."

"The author's comments on art are as stimulating as his exposition of physical theories is clear."

"This is a thoroughly thought-provoking, accessible read, which not only provides some interesting views on art but gives some very nice insights into the concepts underlying physics."

"This material undoubtedly resulted in an excellent classroom experience and if one were contemplating offering such an interdisciplinary course it might be a useful resource."

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