Thursday, April 10, 2008


Anamorphosis is a distorted projection or perspective requiring the viewer to use special devices or occupy a specific vantage point to reconstitute the image. "Ana - morphosis" comes from the Greek words meaning "formed again.

Oblique anamorphosis is closely related to an artistic technique called trompe l'oeil (French for "deceiving the eye", pronounced "tromp loy").

Both use perspective constructions to create a "trick" image, but the difference lies in the nature of the trick. For an anamorphosis, the viewer is presented with something that does not make sense when viewed conventionally, and so he or she must seek out the unconventional viewpoint from which the trick is resolved. For trompe l'oeil, the viewer, standing in one particular (and usually conventional) place, is tricked into seeing an invented image as if it were reality. One of the most stunning examples of the technique is the fresco painting on the ceiling of the Church of Saint Ignazio in Rome, created by Andrea Pozzo during 1691-1694. A semi-circular roof is transformed into a fantastic picture of the heavens, in which Saint Ignatius ascends into paradise:

Kurt Wenner is a master artist and architect best known for his extremely high quality street painting and chalk murals using anamorphosis.

Kurt Wenner

These 3D chalk drawings on pavement have been featured in the media across the globe, in Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland, the United States, and Mexico. His artwork has been seen on ABC's World News Saturday, Good Morning America, and Pan Am and TWA's in-flight programs.


There are two main types of anamorphosis: Perspective (oblique) and Mirror (catoptric). Examples of perspectival anamorphosis date to the early Renaissance (15th Century), whereas examples of mirror anamorphosis (or catoptric anamorphosis) occurred at the time of the baroque (17th century).

Crowds often gather around Wenner as he works and when they are photographed standing next to the art, one can easily see the impact of the illusion. Kurt creates Renaissance classicism that is distinctly his own. They are as much unconfined by traditional canvas as they are not restrained by frames.

Kurt's art invites people to live within a work of art, to be drawn into it visually and to become an actual part of his imaginary world.

His vision of architecture expresses optimism and exuberance, celebrating the richness and complexity of the physical world made even more beautiful by the infusion of the human spirit.

Wenner is the foremost contemporary artist to fuse the visual patrimony of the past with the imagination of the twenty-first century. His sense of originality is stunning.

Wenner's work spans a vast array of disciplines. He designs and executes permanent works of art and architecture, as well as ephemeral visual illusions. From sumptuous murals and fine art of public or private residences to the amazing illusionistic street painting shown here:

For more information about Kurt Wenner and chalk artists in general, please visit the artist's web site HERE.

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Stacy Alexander