Trompe L’Oeil

Trompe l’oeil (French for ‘trick the eye’)is an art technique involving extremely realistic imagery in order to create the optical illusion of the object appearing in three dimension, instead of actually being two dimension.

This story originated in ancient Greece:

“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 [ZOO-ziss], painted a likeness of grapes so natural that birds flew down to peck at them. Then his opponent, Parrhasius [pahr-HAY-zee-us] 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.”

Below are some examples of trompe l’oeil paintings.


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November 18, 2009. Hidden.

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