Visual Paradox

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provides additional background information and further reading. Introduces some subject-specific language.


lengthy, detailed information. Frequently uses technical/subject-specific language. (Includes most analytical articles)


"A paradox is not a conflict within reality. It is a conflict between reality and your feeling of what reality should be like."

– Richard Feynman


What is so compelling about riddles, mysteries, and puzzles? Most people are fascinated by images and objects that are paradoxical or impossible in real life but look oddly convincing and perplexing in 2D. For many centuries, artists have studied the nature of visual experience and how to convincingly render what they see. The results of these investigations can be found in numerous artworks in museums and galleries around the world. Works of art represent a rich source of ideas and understanding about how the world appears to us, and only relatively recently have scientists started to appreciate the many discoveries made by artists in this field.

Image Gallery

Entre Terre et Mer - Bruno Mondot

Hook, Line and Sinker - Donald Clapper

Cabinet of Curiosities - Domenico Remps

The Crevasse - Edgar Mueller

René Magritte Museum

RU-ST007 Bench - Rüskasa

Two Pear - Gregory West

Sylvia Hyman


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