Trompe-l’œil or trompe l’oeil

A technique used all the way back to antiquity and mostly in murals. Trompe l’oeil often exploits optical illusions of forced perspective to create vivid experiences of the architecture extending beyond its actual confines. A sense of realism in three dimensions is a ‘must’ for this to be achieved, even if the end results tend be dramatic contrivances of imaginary landscapes etc.

The term is French meaning ‘deceiving the eye’.

The illusion is of easiest achieved when work in very large format and taking up an entire wall. However, smaller works on canvas have achieved the same effects. A notable example is “Escaping Criticism” by Pere Borrell del Caso painted in 1874.

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