How stirringly beautiful the images in my head

If you only knew how entrancing, how stirringly beautiful the images in my head are, the ones I am unable to express.

M.C. Escher

So y’all know me; I usually try to be really profound or really funny when I write about a place I went. But I don’t have any angle to pitch you here, other than to enthusiastically recommend a special exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria: Escher x Nendo.

This exhibition features the seminal and lesser-known works of M. C. Escher, curated and complemented by the Japanese design studio Nendo. The exhibit layout and installations play with the themes and motifs explored in Escher’s work, specifically those of optical illusions, tessalations, and impossible geometry.

The exhibition hall was designed with the motif of a house, repeated and varied through different kinds of optical illusions or tessaltions.
One sections where metal beams hanging from the ceiling would look like a house from a certain angle.
Venice, 1936

Escher primarily worked as a printmaker, and in his early work, before he started playing with surreal optical illusions, its amazing to note the level of detail, depth and texture he can great with different methods of prints. One print in the exhibition (the city of Venice, above) amazed me with how Escher was able to convey such detail, depth and texture with just some scratches in wood.

Just as Escher does, each section plays with our perception of color, lines and shape. I was initially a bit worried about the hefty exhibition price (especially considering that the permanent exhibitions are all free), but its well-worth your time and money. Even a cursory perusal will take you about an hour.

If you’re in Melbourne now until April 7, it’s well-worth shelling out 28$AUS for this amazing exhibit. It’s enthralling and beautiful and just a little bit spooky, in the best ways.

4 Replies to “How stirringly beautiful the images in my head”

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