Monday, June 24, 2024



Cambridge sees its share of art that plays with science, usually out of a science-based home such as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Lesley University’s VanDernoot Gallery shows it’s sci-curious with the “Catenaria” exhibition by Rhode Island artist Doug Bosch.

Bosch’s current obsession is with the hypnotic dip and rise of how things hang – “catenary,” in fact, is the scientific term for how things hang when strung between two uneven points – and his show reflects that in pieces of hanging string, cord and more elaborate cloth constructions. (His Chandelier 041713, made of plaster, pollen and steel, is above.)

Andrew Mroczek, director of the gallery, credits Bosch with exploring the catenary as image and sculptural form, merging the worlds of art and science by “mining this fundamental principle of geometry, mathematics and physics and infusing aesthetics.”

Bosch, a Yale-trained sculptor, has pieces in the permanent collections of the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln and and at (no surprise) MIT. He is an assistant professor at Rhode Island College, where a preview of “Catenaria” came across as pleasantly baffled by the work:

Bosch continues to mystify with a concentration on his materials’ gravity and with a referential architectural design sensibility.

Rhode Island Monthly had a more positive spin, calling Bosch “An artist whose process is as compelling as his product [and] has always pushed the boundaries of the visual experience, making us question the relationships between art, science and nature. ”

Judge for yourself at The VanDernoot Gallery at University Hall, 1815 Massachusetts Ave., Porter Square. The free exhibit can be seen through March 14 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. and Thursdays from 3 to 8 p.m. Hours are subject to change; call to confirm at (617) 585-6656.