Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Image & Illusion

Image & Illusion, the most recent display in the Museum’s atrium walkway, invites visitors to peek into the 17 window boxes to discover a range of representations of different animals. Created by Museum intern Robin Hayashi (with guidance from the exhibits team), the boxes feature illusionary images that shift with perspective between photographs and graphic depictions.

Robin, who has worked at the Museum since January 2010 and is graduating from RISD this spring with a degree in graphic design, described her inspiration and process.

Each box has three different images of the same animal: one photograph, one graphic and one silhouette. Walking by each box, the image changes, providing an exciting and playful transformation that capitalizes on the ramp's natural use as a walkway.

As a graphic designer, I have always been inspired by different ways of representing the same idea. After figuring out how the folded paper illusion works, I collected images of animals, ranging from familiar farm animals to spectacular sea creatures. Then I created colorful graphics that correspond to each photograph but show the animal in an alternate view, perhaps just the animal's face if the photograph depicts the whole body, or vice versa. I also developed a very simple silhouette, much a logo, of each animal.

I wanted to show the ways different arrangements of shape and color can communicate the same thing. A photograph of five pigs in a barn, a simple pink pig nose and a the outline of a pig's shape all say, "Pig!" I hope that visitors are inspired by the simple magic of images on folded paper – perhaps even enough to make their own! 
Image & Illusion will be on display through June, so come see for yourselves!

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