Op art (from English op art, short for optical art – optical art) is a neo-avant-garde trend in the visual arts, one of the later modifications of abstract art. In op art, the effects of spatial displacement, merging, and “hovering” of forms were achieved by introducing sharp color and tonal contrasts, rhythmic repetitions, intersecting spiral and lattice configurations, curving lines.
The basis of op-art is in the artistically organized optical effects (effects of spatial displacement, hovering, fusion of forms), which were achieved by geometrized combinations of lines and spots with the introduction of sharp color and tonal contrasts, rhythmic repeats, wriggling lines, the intersection of spiral and trellised configurations. The use of mirrors, lenses, trembling metal plates and wires, installations of changing light, dynamic structures, enhances the effect of exposure, creates a special aesthetic environment, achieving a high degree of abstraction from the concrete. The illusion of movement, flashes of light, a changing form and a successive change of images arise automatically in works of op art, i.e. fictitiously, present only in the sensations of the viewer.
In the 1960s, op art was short-lived, but widely recognized not only in painting, but also in applied art: in graphics, design (furniture, textiles, wall paintings), in the field of fashion and decorative makeup.
Masters of Op Art: Victor Vasarely, Bridget Riley, Richard Anushkevich, Jesus Rafael Soto, Larry Punz, Carlos Cruz-Dies.