Alan Wolfson, Canal St. Cross-Section (detail), 2009-10. Plastic, brass, plywood, electrical components, and mixed media, 27 x 23.5 x 19 in.

Irresistible Illusions and Other Worlds

At least since the Renaissance, when artists developed sophisticated perspectival and trompe l’oeil effects to produce convincing representations of the real world or of imaginary scenes, illusionism has been a large part of the story and substance of Western visual art. Later, abstract and conceptual art forms threw illusionistic painting and sculpture for a loop, but among certain art-makers, the urge to tease and delight the eye with two- and three-dimensional worlds has long endured. Their inventiveness, along with a certain kind of creative mischief, can produce works as entertaining and alluring as they are deceptively believable and enigmatic. …see the entire article in the print version of September’s Sculpture magazine.