Trompe L’oeil


BRICK. Detail (Vase), JMN, 2014. Oil on canvas, 34 x 34 in.

“Painting objects and people as they actually appear….”
(Andrew Ferren, “A 7-Hour, 6-Mile, Round-the-Museum Tour of the Prado,” NYTimes, 3-18-19)

The phrase encapsulates my former goal: To paint something accurately, yet somehow enhanced: A simplistic, naive and ambiguous goal all in one. Nothing is as it appears (to me).


FRAME. Detail (Flags and Guns), JMN, 2014. Oil on canvas, 48 x 48 in.

In early pictures I aspired to “trompe l’oeil” of all things, that fool-the-eye trick that can tempt the viewer to walk into a wall perceiving a corridor there. Or to fall for a fake frame painted on a picture. I was also drawn to the pictorial jokes of Maigret — naughty, playful, ironic.


CORRIDORS. Detail (Blue Gate), JMN, 2014. Oil on canvas. 48 x 48 in.

It seemed like a lark at first; however, stints at the easel had a chastening effect, and made me want to get more serious. Worse luck. My goal now, in general, is to paint with less ego and more gumption.

(c) 2019 JMN.

About JMN

I live in Texas and devote much of my time to easel painting on an amateur basis. I stream a lot of music, mostly jazz, throughout the day. I like to read and memorize poetry.
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