Victor Vasarely was a Hungarian-French artist who has created the Op Art movement. Vasarely’s paintings and sculpture utilized geometrical shapes and colorful graphics to create illusions of spatial depth on two-dimensional surfaces. This abstract method of painting, also known as Kineticism, borrowed from a diverse range of influences, including Bauhaus principles, Wassily Kandinsky’s abstraction, and the Constructivist movement, which had a particularly significant impact on Vasarely’s practice.
Considered one of the progenitors of Op Art for his optically complex and illusionistic paintings, Victor Vasarely spent the course of a long, critically acclaimed career seeking, and arguing for, an approach to art making that was deeply social. He placed primary importance on the development of an engaging, accessible visual language that could be universally understood—this language, for Vasarely, was geometric abstraction, more commonly known as Op Art.
Through precise combinations of lines, geometric shapes, colors, and shading, he created eye-popping paintings, full of the illusion of depth, movement, and three-dimensionality. More than pleasing tricks for the eye, Vasarely insisted, “pure form and pure color can signify the world.”