(Poetry | Wonders | Philosophy | The World | Visual Art)
Mauk Escher: "Hand with Reflecting Sphere" (1935)Mostly famous for optical illusions, the art of Mauk Escher (1898-1971) is often self-referential. In cases like this one, the self-reference is explicit and results in an expansion of both self-awareness and awareness of the environment. The artist's left hand (Escher was left-handed) lifts a glass globe that reflects the image of the artist himself and of his surroundings. The metaphor is that the artist can see his world better by looking at his own art (the globe gives him a complete view of the entire room). At the same time we (the viewers) do not know if the environment depicted in that globe is the real room or an imaginary room. Thus the artist is creating the world that we experience. To emphasize this point, the artist's eyes are located in the exact center of the scene.