Open Studio: Op Art
Jun 1 2024 | 10am - Jun 30 2024 | 5pm

333 E River Road
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

36 × 80 × 1 1/4 in. abstract painting dominated by triangles, circles, and rectangular shapes. The "background" of the composition is a black and white striped plane while the foreground features imposing triangular figures with circular "bellies". The composition makes prolific use of simultaneous contrast by employing highly saturated red, yellow, orange, green, and magenta colors next to each other.

Additional Details

June's theme for Open Studio is OP ART, inspired by Rico Gaston's piece Untitled (Young Mystics), 2020

Op Art, short for "optical art," is a style of visual art that uses optical illusions to create the impression of movement, depth, or distortion. It emerged in the 1960s and is characterized by geometric shapes, precise patterns, and high contrast colors. Op Art artworks typically employ precise, mathematical compositions to create visual illusions of depth, movement, and spatial ambiguity. These illusions are often achieved through the careful arrangement of shapes and colors, as well as the manipulation of line and pattern. Op Art pieces are designed to engage the viewer's perception, inviting them to explore the dynamic interplay of form and space.

Artists working in the Op art style often employ techniques such as moiré patterns, perspective tricks, and the juxtaposition of complementary colors to create optical effects that deceive the viewer's eye. Op art aims to engage the viewer actively, challenging perception and creating dynamic visual experiences. 

Drop-in, Self-Guided Art Activity

Create your own hand-drawn, optical illusion art by only using lines to create the illusion of form. Each month, WAM presents a self-guided art-making activity inspired by an art piece or artist from the museum's collection. Everything you need to make your own masterpiece is provided and the activity is designed to be accessible and open to all. Drop-in during open hours and get creative!


Rico Gatson, Untitled (Young Mystics), 2020. Acrylic and glitter on wood, 36 × 80 × 1 1/4 in. Purchased with funds given by anonymous donors. On view.