Adriano U. Graziotti,
Hermetica Geometria, Roma: Simmetria, 2002;
Cupole Geodetiche, Roma: Simmetria 2012; Polyhedra, Roma: Simmetria, 2012.
Review by Stefano Serafini
Adriano Ugo Graziotti (Carpenedolo 1920 – Castenedolo 2000) can be considered an Artist, in the Renaissance sense of the word. He was painter, sculptor, mathematician, expert in archaic geometries, polyhedra discoverer, and creator of amazing magic squares. He spent part of his life in U.S.A. as an appreciated drawing professor (anatomy and nude drawings) at the American University of San Francisco. Being a well-learned, energetic, brilliantly ironic man, though always distant from any social-political affiliation, he experienced a climax of glory, and periods of complete oblivion.
He has left a unique mark in all his original works, that can be admired in the collection of 120 large polyhedra donated to the Capitoline Museum of Roma. Claudio Lanzi (engineer), Graziotti’s friend and follower, has been the editor, together with Silvio Maracchia (math professor) and Biagio di Carlo (architect), of three books dedicated to him, which collect the artist’s plates and their original comments: the first book, Hermetica Geometria (2002) is about the partitions of the Euclidean plane as commissioned to him by the Pacific Science Center of Seattle (Washington); the second book, Cupole Geodetiche (2012) is about Graziotti’s work on geodetic constructions, highly appreciated by Richard Buckminster Fuller; the third one, Polyhedra (2012), collects drawings and projects of Pythagorean, Platonic and Archimedean polyhedra. The three books have been edited by the small Italian publishing house Simmetria (Rome), with an effort that deserves admiration. To plunge into Graziotti’s planes and works is like rediscovering Leonardo’s world, Piero della Francesca’s perspectives, and Luca Pacioli’s proportions. Scrolling through such beautiful and surprising pages, results in an enriching experience for mathematicians, solid geometry experts, architects interested in the logics of forms, and even scholars of Platonic philosophy.