These Illusions Will Make You See Differently for 5 Minutes

Here are six masters of surrealistic art. Each one of them reminds us that the world is full of wonders — not only on the outside, but also in the depths of our imagination. The bonus at the end of this article will change your vision and trick your brain. Be careful!

The magical surrealism of Rob Gonsalves

The Sun Sets Sail

Unfinished Puzzle

Ladies of the Lake

Bedtime Aviation

Some refer to the style of drawing practised by Rob Gonsalves as ’surrealism’. However, we think ’magical realism’ might be more appropriate. The strange, unnoticed union between different but equally real worlds and the subtle but impossible transformations of objects are the thread which runs through all of Gonsalves’ paintings. He reminds us through his brilliant work that everything around us is in some ways interconnected.

The parallel worlds of Jacek Yerka

Apple calendar

The labyrinth of spring

Winter wave


Polish artist Jacek Yerka is famous around the world for his fantastical and mysterious paintings. A lover of drawing since childhood, he had to defend his unique style in the face of objections from his traditionalist teachers at art school, who found his surreal — some might say visionary — approach too outlandish.

The ambiguous imagination of Neil Simone



Paradoxical interior

Deceptive light

Nothing in the paintings of British artist Neil Simone is what it seems at first glance. "For me, the world around us is a series of fragile and ever-changing forms, shades and borders", says Simone. Indeed, all of his paintings give the impression of illusion and interconnection, where the boundaries between objects are blurred.

The multiple metaphors of Vladimir Kush

Invitation to dinner


Sunset over the ocean

Waves breaking against the ship

There is some mysterious element in all the work by Vladimir Kush which is quite simply mesmerizing. It’s as though they are lit from the inside, creating the impression that the viewer is there participating in the scene themselves.

The penetrating surrealism of Rafal Olbinski



Don’t judge a book by its cover


Rafal Olbinski, a well-known artist from Poland, is one of those who can make you see utterly ordinary things from a completely different perspective. This is surely the mark of a truly talented surrealist — to allow us to glimpse a world which is not real, yet which can to some degree "exist" vividly in the mind’s eye.

The deceptive paintings of Oleg Shupliak

Two birds


Painting in Italian Style (left); Forest Song (right)

Oleg Shupliak, a 47-year-old artist from Ukraine, was originally an architect. Yet his talent for surrealist art is self-evident to anyone who sees so much as one piece of work by him. He has the uncanny ability to create optical illusions in his work, which can be "read" by the viewer in completely different ways.

Bonus: Stare at the center of the image for 30-40 seconds. Try not to blink. Now look at you hand or anything you want to shrink.