by Hannah Miller
From the moment you walk into this gallery your eyes are met with stimulating pops of color, precise geometric patterning, and experimentation with line and direction. At the intersection of these aspects, Vasarely chose to focus on creating intricate optical illusions for every viewer’s eyes and perspectives.
All of Vasarely’s art seems to pose the question: “What do you see when you look at me?” There is never just one answer; the minute the viewer thinks they see the work one way, the point of perspective changes and the viewer may see something completely different! This sort of realization also plays into absorbing the exhibition as a whole: some of his prints are just so colorful and bold that at times they can steal the spotlight from other works. For this reason, I feel that it is difficult to choose just one of his works to focus on, as I am constantly discovering another one of the prints in the room.
As the Visitor Services administrator, I had the opportunity to work our front desk during the opening reception of the exhibition October 6, 2017. While working the event, I noticed that patrons were particularly interested in Vasarely’s print Tigres (see below). The contrasting hues of purple, yellow and red that embody the tigers against a background of amber waves seem to give the animals depth and a sense of movement as they dance around each other.