House of Escher: Exhibit showcases mindbending artist

Birds of a feather: Escher’s woodprint “Day and Night” is one of more than 200 pieces of art in the new exhibit at Industry City.
for Brooklyn Paper
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This exhibit is in-depth!

The eye-twisting visual illusions and painstaking illustrations of Dutch artist M.C. Escher come to life in new art exhibit, which opened this week in Industry City. The curator of “Escher: The Exhibition and Experience” said the attraction would both amaze those who visit, and give them a better understanding of the artist’s life .

“You need to get to know an artist,” said Mark Veldhuysen. “I hope people leave thinking, ‘Wow!’ ”

The exhibit features more than 200 pieces of the artist’s work, including his iconic lithographs and woodcuts of impossible stairways and evolving patterns. The layout guides visitors through the artist’s life, beginning with Escher’s early works and influences, with a special focus on his realistic images of Italy, and then transitions to the quirky and mind-bending tessellations and paradoxical images that later made him famous.

In addition to the dazzling art, the exhibit uses interactive displays to recreate some of the Escher’s illusions in three-dimensional spaces. Cleverly placed cameras and mirrors allow guests to interact with and enter some of the design elements the artist used in his work. In the “Relativity Room,” for instance, those standing in the corners look either impossibly puny or gigantic. Visitors can also enter a mirror-filled room, where they will see their reflections repeated in infinite loops.

Veldhuysen said the exhibit is designed to offer context to some of Escher’s iconic images, and to cultivate respect for the artist’s life and work.

“Everyone has seen his work in mathematical books in school,” he said. “But I think that if you see his early work combined with his later work, you’ll really appreciate the guy himself.”

“Escher: the Exhibition and Experience” at Industry City Building 6 [34 34th St., between Second and Third avenues in Sunset Park,]. On display until Feb. 3, 2019. Open daily, 10 am–7 pm (open Thursdays until 9 pm). $20 ($15 students and seniors, $6 kids).

Updated 5:42 pm, July 9, 2018
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