Winners of the scienceXart school photography competition

This year is the 100th anniversary of the International Mathematical Union, and in honour of this the Australian Academy of Science chose the theme ‘spot the maths’ for this year’s scienceXart competition. The competition was open to school students of all ages, with winners chosen in several year-level brackets: Foundation–Year 3, Years 4–6, Years 7–9 and Years 10–12. There was also a separate category dedicated to statistics. The winners can be seen at this link.

Open for entries from 28 June to 25 September, the competition engaged students with the mathematical sciences and highlighted the inherent creativity of maths. The competition received close to 1000 submissions from students all around Australia. The judging panel and Academy shortlisting team enjoyed the high quality and creative submissions that combined maths and art.

Dr Julia Collins of Edith Cowan University was on the judging panel and said “I was blown away by both the quality of the winning photos and also the creativity of how these students had seen unexpected mathematics in the world around us. From the spirals in shells and plants to circles made by falling raindrops and the hexagons in bubbles and beehives. Or the symmetry in a chairlift, the number patterns in playgrounds, and the wonderful visual statistics of swallows on a fence.”

The student who won each bracket will receive a STEM-related prize pack for themselves and their class.

Dr Collins noted that “The winners should be very proud of their achievements, and I encourage everyone to take a look at the shortlist of impressive photographs. I can’t wait to see what the 2021 competition will bring!”