In these minimalist op art pieces, I delve into the metaphoric realm of geometric shapes, with a particular focus on the hexagon as the foundational element for creating cubes and other simple three-dimensional regular shapes. The artworks I present depict solid or three-dimensional structures that appear plausible and real, yet are in fact illusions known as ‘impossible figures.’ However, discerning these impossible figures isn’t immediately evident; one must concentrate on specific areas of the representation to grasp that they could never exist in reality! Drawing an impossible stereographic structure becomes achievable by merging two or more contrasting viewpoints or perspectives of the same object, or even by blurring the boundaries between the exterior and interior of an object… The more ‘normal’ and ‘simple’ an impossible figure appears, the more captivating it becomes! Indeed, impossible objects aren’t created solely to bewilder the eyes; their purpose lies in confounding the mind and challenging one’s acquired visuo-spatial skills and stereographic knowledge.
The two intricate drawings displayed above and below combine two tribars to form an impossible isometric cube, showcasing a mesmerizing interplay between form and illusion.
As an artist, I enjoy including subliminal messages or figures in my work. My paintings, photographs and collages play on the foreground and background relationship of our visual perception and represent common or iconic faces the viewer has to rediscover.
In this magical bookmark of my creation, a portrait of M. L. King appears when held over a blank page or up to a light. From his famous words, we are reminded that, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.” A neat gift available from Art of Play.
While in this one below, a portrait of Gandhi appears when held over a blank page or up to a light — a subtle reminder to read with intention and “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Still available from my partner Art of Play.
Per celebrare la luce è stato realizzato un percorso espositivo nell’Università di Firenze dedicato alle illusioni ottiche. La mostra, curata da un comitato scientifico, ospita anche molte delle mie opere.
To celebrate light, an exhibition’s itinerary was created at the University of Florence to explore the world of optical illusions. The exhibition, curated by a scientific committee, also hosts many works of mine.
A visual surprise is hidden within this magical bookmark I created for my partner Art of Play. From one perspective, the grooves in the metal die-cut card seem to be an abstract radial design but place the pattern against a solid dark background and a familiar portrait emerges.
Can you guess who’s this female Mexican artist who once said: “Everything changes, everything moves, everything revolves, everything flies and goes away.”
Below are two neat optical illusion projects for which I was commissioned by “Art of Play”. From one perspective, the grooves in the metal die-cut bookmarks seem to be an abstract design but place the pattern against a solid clear or dark background and a familiar figure pops into view! These bookmarks are a sliver of wonder that hides between the pages to guard your place in any story.
Everything is relative with this magical bookmark of my creation depicting the famous theoretical physicist. Engraved with one of Einstein’s most famous quotations: “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. He to whom the emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand wrapped in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.”
A math-magic article I wrote for the German magazine Zeit Wissen: with the 13 triangular and square pieces (fig. 1) it is possible to form two large squares shown in fig. 2. Though the second large square has an extra piece the dimensions of the squares seem to be the same! Can you explain why this is possible?
In 1997, I remixed the Leonardo da Vinci’s famous painting Mona Lisa into 142 perfectly spaced color beads placed at the intersections of an imaginary two-dimensional triangular network. Close up, the picture of the set of beads makes no sense, but if you see it from a distance you will perceive (or at least ‘guess’?) the portrait of Mona Lisa, the most famous Leonardo Da Vinci’s painting.
Focus is an Italian monthly popular science magazine published in Milan, Italy, with which I have collaborated for more than 10 years.
Focus Magazine issue #336 featuring my article and my optical illusions has been released on October 2020. It contains my special 10-page dossier on visual perception with over 13 original visual illusions of my creation and their related explanation.
The cover also features a special effect I designed for Focus: as you read the main title, the cover image moves and, curiously enough, the title changes if you look at it closely (ILLUSIONI) or from a distance (COSA VEDI?).