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Victor Vasarely (1908–)

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Hungarian artist, Victor Vasarely, born April 9, 1908, is perhaps the best-known creator of post-World War II geometric painting.

He worked as a graphic designer until 1944. First creating complex black-and-white patterns in his earliest paintings, He soon added intense contrasts of color. The European pioneers of the style were Josef Albers and Victor de Vasarely. Vasarely was one of the most influential op artists. His writings defined the philosophy of Op Art and explored the science of optical effects and illusions. He was a pioneer in the development of almost every form of optical device for the creation of a new art of visual illusion.

Typically, the artist arranges a large number of small, nearly identical geometric shapes in patterns that generate vivid illusions of depth and, in some cases, motion.For example, Vasarely uses various devices in his paintings to create the illusion of movement and change within abstract elements. The pieces appear to be bulging at the top; but in reality are flat 2-dimensional canvas.

A citizen of France since 1959, Vasarely had some 150 solo exhibitions in the half-century span 1930-80 and has won many international prizes.