Artist Hand-Draws 3D Optical Illusions on Walls That Play With Depth and Perspective

Math Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann Gilmore

Los Angeles-based artist Katy Ann Gilmore combines art and mathematics to transform ordinary, flat surfaces into incredible three-dimensional illusions. At first glance, her intricate work looks digitally rendered; however, Gilmore meticulously hand-draws each detail using pens and markers. Whether it’s a giant mural or a smaller work on paper, each line drawing appears to leap from her chosen canvas.

Gilmore earned a BA in Mathematics, Art, and Spanish from Greenville College, Illinois and an MFA in Visual Art from Azusa Pacific University, California. The artist’s interdisciplinary background has led to a unique and highly methodological approach to making art. Her works are often planned or inspired by mathematical formulae, graphs, and equations, resulting in extraordinary shapes and patterns that play with perspective. Gilmore explains, “I'm currently influenced heavily by topography and the relationship between 2D, perpendicular planes, and their distortions into 3D space.”

Mainly working in black and white, Gilmore uses a combination of straight and curved lines. Straight lines are cleverly drawn with sharp angles to create the illusion of three-dimensional space, while curved lines are used to display dips and peaks, just like contour lines on a topographic map. In other works, Gilmore draws tightly-spaced, elongated lines that look like multiple loops of thread, hanging loose from a woven piece of fabric. Other pieces are rendered in hundreds of hand-drawn triangles, resulting in net-like meshes that cover intriguing 3D shapes.

You can see more of Gilmore’s incredible work on her website.

LA-based artist Katy Ann Gilmore combines art and mathematics to transform flat surfaces into three-dimensional illusions.

Math Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann Gilmore

Each line drawing is meticulously hand-drawn using pens and markers.

Math Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann Gilmore

Her fascinating math art plays with perspective and tricks the eye into seeing shapes and lines that seemingly leap from their canvases.

Math Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreMath Art Line Drawing by Katy Ann GilmoreKaty Ann Gilmore: Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Tumblr
h/t: [Hi Fructose]

All images via Katy Ann Gilmore.

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Emma Taggart

Emma Taggart is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met. Originally from Northern Ireland, she is an artist now based in Berlin. After graduating with a BA in Fashion and Textile Design in 2013, Emma decided to combine her love of art with her passion for writing. Emma has contributed to various art and culture publications, with an aim to promote and share the work of inspiring modern creatives. While she writes every day, she’s also devoted to her own creative outlet—Emma hand-draws illustrations and is currently learning 2D animation.
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