On February 22, 2017, our Women In Science column featured a profile of mathematician Dr. Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman and first Iranian to win a prestigious Fields Medal, known as the “Nobel Prize of mathematics”. Then just 39, Maryam had “already solved enough of pure math’s Insoluble Enigmas to fill two careers,” as our article noted. Sadly, just a few months later, on July 14, 2017, Dr. Mirzakhani died from breast cancer at the age of 40. She left behind a legacy of passion, accomplishments and contributions, the impact of which are now the focus of a new documentary from Producer/Director George Csicsery, Secrets of the Surface: The Mathematical Vision of Maryam Mirzakhani (watch film trailer above).
Official Film Synopsis: “Filmed in Canada, Iran, and the United States, Secrets of the Surface: The Mathematical Vision of Maryam Mirzakhani examines the life and mathematical work of Maryam Mirzakhani, an Iranian immigrant to the United States who became a superstar in her field. In 2014, she was both the first woman and the first Iranian to be honored by mathematics’ highest prize, the Fields Medal.
“Mirzakhani’s contributions are explained by leading mathematicians and illustrated by animated sequences. Her mathematical colleagues from around the world, as well as former teachers, classmates, and students in Iran today, convey the deep impact of her achievements. The path of her education, success on Iran’s Math Olympiad team, and her brilliant work, make Mirzakhani an ideal role model for girls looking toward careers in science and mathematics.”
WATCH THE FILM… Secrets of the Surface: The Mathematical Vision of Maryam Mirzakhani is now available to rent or buy for personal use on Vimeo here. The institutional copy for screening at colleges, universities or for large gatherings can be purchased here.
Lead Image: Zala Films