Famous Paintings Reimagined as Fun Illustrations Made With Geometric Shapes

Geometric Paintings by John Battalgazi

Johannes Vermeer, “Girl With a Pearl Earring,” 1665

Most famous works of art are known for their distinctive style or incredible realism. Tokyo-based artist John Battalgazi is challenging himself to replicate famous paintings like the Mona Lisa using only geometric shapes. As a result, these minimalist designs capture the essence of what makes these pieces so well known.

In this striking style, Vermeer's Girl With a Pearl Earring is composed of mostly circles and ovals and is filled in with a handful of colors. Similarly, Battalgazi translates the ornate patterns of Klimt's The Kiss to a simpler spotted design adorning the softly wavy shapes. “I've been working on a style that infuses various elements such as those seen in abstract, Cubist, and Art Deco illustrations,” Battalgazi tells My Modern Met. “These are styles that appeal to me and influence my art.”

Unlike the inspirations for these pieces—which are made using traditional methods—Battalgazi prefers to render his designs with digital tools, such as the iPad. “Nowadays with digital technology, we are able to mix and match easier so I can arrange work accordingly and experiment more,” he explains. “That allows me to be bold and try interesting color schemes and compositions.”

You can purchase prints via Battalgazi's website, and keep up to date with his latest projects by following the artist on Instagram.

Tokyo-based artist John Battalgazi reimagines famous works of art using geometric shapes.

Geometric Paintings by John Battalgazi

Gustav Klimt, “The Kiss,” 1907

Geometric Paintings by John Battalgazi

Leonardo da Vinci, “Mona Lisa,” c. 1503-6

Geometric Paintings by John Battalgazi

Henri Matisse, “Blue Nude II,” 1952

Geometric Paintings by John Battalgazi

Grant Wood, “American Gothic,” 1930

Geometric Paintings by John Battalgazi

Diego Rivera, “Flower Carrier,” 1935

John Battalgazi: Website | BehanceInstagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by John Battalgazi.

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Margherita Cole

Margherita Cole is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met and illustrator based in Southern California. She holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Studio Art from Wofford College, and an MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice from Falmouth University in the UK. She wrote and illustrated an instructional art book about how to draw cartoons titled 'Cartooning Made Easy: Circle, Triangle, Square' that was published by Walter Foster in 2022.
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