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Op art show charts 150 years of changing perceptions

Seurat to Riley: The Art of Perception. Compton Verney Art Gallery, 8 July - 1 October.

Op Art, the art movement that uses optical illusions and wavy lines to communicate with the viewer, is to get an important showcase at Warwickshire's Compton Verney gallery this summer.

Seurat to Riley: The Art of Perception, which links the 19th century French pointillist painter Georges Seurat to the British psychedelic painter Bridget Riley, who made her name in the 1960s, is one of the first exhibitions of its kind to be staged in this country.

The exhibition, which runs until the start of October, explores a thread running through the art history of the last 150 years - the ways in which colour and precision are used to influence how the beholder perceives art.

Key loans include Georges Seurat‘s La Luzerne, Saint-Denis (1885, Scottish National Gallery) pictured above where flickering brushstrokes in response to the landscape of alfalfa and poppies are placed with an almost mathematical precision, showing the artist considering the ideas of perception.

The exhibition features ninety works by twenty-three artists, as well as new commissions created especially for the show by German abstract artist Lothar Gotz.

Compton Verney's director, Professor Steven Parissien, said, "Optical Art explores a range of effects and emotions, using complex geometry and advanced mathematics to communicate with the viewer in a way that is simultaneously mentally challenging and visually appealing. This wonderful exhibition demonstates just how exhilarating, electrifying and eye-opening Op Art can be."

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