For years, we’ve been fascinated by the surreal sculptures of Jonty Hurwitz. Now, the South African artist is back with a new series of anamorphic pieces. Like his earlier creations, his more recent models creatively reveal themselves through tactical reflections.
Hurtwitz’s series of warped sculptures features myriad materials. Some are made of metals, like bronze or copper. Others inventively employ plaster and even oil paint. At first glance, the pieces appear to be either entirely abstract and organic or, at the very least, comically distorted forms. However, once viewed against strategically-placed cylindrical mirrors provided by the artist, their true identities come to life.
In Childhood, a short, stout, and not quite human-like figure clearly becomes a little girl chasing a butterfly. Similarly, in The Illusive Cat, an unsettling, fleshy form is transformed into a slinky Sphynx feline. Additionally, a stretched, green mass morphs into an amphibious Anamorphic Frog. And, in The Hand That Caught Me Falling, a golden, liquid-like substance turns into a “beautiful hand that caught [Hurtwitz’s] soul as it plummeted.” As if by magic, the optical illusion sculptures play with perspective and effortlessly alter our preconceived perceptions of reality.
Unusually—but not surprisingly—Hurwitz boasts a background in engineering. As a student, he “discovered the very fine line between art and science.” This fortuitous epiphany inspired him to pair physics with art. Eventually, his experimentation culminated in his current practice, which emphasizes imaginative thinking grounded in active learning. “The gift of imagination is more than any talent for absorbing absolute knowledge,” he writes on his Instagram page.