Lietta Ruger's SwanDeer Art Gallery

Trompe L'oeil

Gallery Room 1
Gallery Room 2
Wall Murals
Trompe L'oeil
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From Art Dictionary

trompe l'oeil - A French term literally meaning "trick the eye." Sometimes called illusionism, it's a style of painting which gives the appearance of three-dimensional, or photographic realism. It flourished from the Renaissance onward. The discovery of linear perspective in fifteenth-century Italy and advancements in the science of optics in the seventeenth-century Netherlands enabled artists to render object and spaces with eye-fooling exactitude. Both playful and intellectually serious, trompe artists toy with spectators' seeing to raise questions about the nature of art and perception.


There is a story from ancient Greece that two painters were rivals in a contest: each would try to make a picture that produced a more perfect illusion of the real world. One, named Zeuxis, painted a likeness of grapes so natural that birds flew down to peck at them. Then his opponent, Parrhasius brought in his picture covered in a cloth. Reaching out to lift the curtain, Zeuxis was stunned to discover he had lost the contest. What had appeared to be a cloth was in reality his rival's painting.


Pere Borrell del Caso (Spanish, 19th century),Escaping Criticism (click on this link), 1874, oil on canvas, Banco de España, Madrid. In advance of art criticism, this boy (the painting itself) appears to escape his (its) frame.

Studio Window 1200 mm x 1300 mm This is an oil painting on canvas painted for an exhibition. It is to be hung on the wall without a frame, so that the edge of the stretcher becomes the edge of the architrave. The view is looking out my studio window. Only the window catches were not painted from life .

... Arthur Ruger's and Willapa Magazine's
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or ...

Tourist Trap specializing in Bric-a-Brac & Gewgaws
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© 2004 Lietta Ruger.  Reproduction of material authored by Lietta or Arthur Ruger  from any pages  without written permission is strictly prohibited. © 2004 SwanDeer Productions. All rights reserved.