From fine art to home design to packaging, optical art, or op art for short, is everywhere. Traced back to movements in art like Cubism and Constructivism, op art is traditionally known to give visual  impressions of movement, flashing, warping, or to reveal hidden images. The effect might prove psychedelic or disorienting. Then, there’s a branch of op art focused more on the conceptual side–more surreal art that still might be visually perplexing, but is more about the idea of it being perplexing than it actually being so. Confused? Good! Keep at it while you take a look at our latest finds.

SEE ALSO Axel de Stampa’s Architecture GIFs Will Make Your Head Spin

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Images via Trend Land

Dominique Petrin’s fun, colorful silkscreen prints have been showing up everywhere. Her work is popular in Canada, particularly in Montréal, where she has displayed public art and currently has gallery exhibitions–check her out. She likes to mix bold stripes in all directions, houndstooth prints, icons and graphics that make up her installation work and prints. 

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Image via Design Milk

What’s going on here? The 60 Red Chair by XYZ Integrated Architecture literally makes you sit on the edge of your seat–at an intense slant, there’s something pretty visually (and definitely physically) off with this seat. We’re still loving the way it looks, though…

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Image via Trend Land

 Mirror works by minimal/conceptual artist Jeppe Hein will literally turn your vision around. Mostly working with reflective surfaces, Hein has made large-scale mazes, mobiles, and quirky, disorienting sculptures. Look into his work.

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

 Image via Dezeen

Design Academy Eindhoven graduate Pieteke Korte has created a collection of leather samples and bags made using laser engraving, neon colors and eye-catching  patterns. Entitled Visual Interference, the artist quotes: “”Introducing grids and patterns was my way of taking it a step further giving the leather an extra dimension – engraving leather shapes the way it moves.”

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Image via Design Milk

 What’s so special about this LED lamp, you ask? It’s completely flat! Bulbing uses 3D wire-frame images and moves them onto flat materials, creating a completely 3D-looking 2D object. Cool. See the successful project on Kickstarter

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup 7

Image via Cleverhood

While most Cleverhood rain capes aren’t made with op-art in mind, the company’s marketing campaign and logo have made use of it. We love the way this ad (and their web homepage) looks, for example–sleek and simple, despite all the pattern.

SEE ALSO Photo of the Day: Optical Illusion Created by Bela Borsodi

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup 3 (2)

Image via Cole & Son

The optical illusions in Cole & Son’s Geometric wallpaper collection are intense, but not overbearing. If you’re into op art-inspired wallpaper, try focusing it on just one wall or even covering a furniture piece, like in the picture. That’ll keep things more subtle.

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Image via Trend Land

A good number of German artist Katharina Fritsch‘s large-scale works seem to flatten 3D objects into 2D-looking forms or silhouettes, like shown above–kind of the opposite of the Bulbing LED lamp earlier in this list. And check out the almost kaleidoscopic pattern in this piece–wow. 

Optical Illusions in Art and Design A Head-Spinning Roundup

Image via Behance

Yep, op art is even all over makeup packaging. Designed for a new company Uzuri, graphic designer Chloe Galea used the idea of “makeup as a way of creating illusions” as inspiration for this monotone collection. See the project on Behance

SEE ALSO 5 Strange Foods: Everything is Not What It Seems

What’s your favorite design that makes use of optical illusions?

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