|Death Date: March 27, 1972
|Maurits Cornelis Escher (1898 – 1972) is one of the world’s most famous graphic artists. He is most famous for his so-called impossible constructions; his masterpieces Metamorphosis I and Metamorphosis II which were printed in 1939/40. The concept of Metamorphosis II is to morph one image into a tessellated pattern and then slowly alter that pattern until it eventually becomes a new image. The process begins left to right with the word metamorphose (the Dutch form of the metamorphosis). This grid then becomes a black and white checkered pattern, which then becomes tessellations of reptiles, a honeycomb, insects, fish, birds and a pattern of three-dimensional blocks and red tops. These blocks then become the architecture of the Italian coastal town of Atrani. In this image Atrani is linked by a bridge to a tower in the water, which is actually a rook piece from a chess set. There are other chess pieces in the water and the water becomes a chess board. The chess board leads to a checkered wall, which then returns to the word metamorphose.
Early in Escher’s career he drew inspiration from nature, making studies of insects, landscapes, and plants; all of which he reused as details in his artworks.
Escher made 448 mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, woodcuts, and wood engravings and over 2000 drawings and sketches.