Artist Jeff Frost paints massive geometric shapes on walls so that they function as optical illusions, blurring the line between 2D and 3D.

Multimedia artist Jeff Frost's Flawed Symmetry of Prediction isn't your average time-lapse study of the Milky Way. Frost paints massive geometric shapes on walls so that they function as optical illusions, blurring the line between 2D and 3D when captured on video. 

The experimental piece unfolds to reveal a haunting, post-apocalyptic world where flickering wildfires and industrial plants illuminate desert vistas. Frost's sci-fi vibe is inspired in part by actual science -- one painting draws on a NASA diagram of evidence for the Big Bang and the soundtrack uses clips recorded by Voyager 1. Be sure to watch it full screen in HD to appreciate the crisp visual detail.

The artist describes his creative process in detail in a 90-page ebook, available for free here, including battles with bees and cranky neighbors while he painted the Big Bang-inspired piece:

The painting I was working on was a massive optical illusion. It covered a third of the room, including the ceiling, and consisted of 154 squares, which had been painted on a three-dimensional surface, but appeared to the camera as flat. It was an abstraction of a NASA diagram which predicted the single greatest piece of evidence we have for the Big Bang: cosmic background radiation. I loved that the prediction diagram was so neat and symmetrical, and the diagram of the actual evidence was so chaotic and messy. It was a successful theory with measurable evidence in nature, but it made me think that even when humans are right, we’re still kind of wrong. I couldn’t deny that I was personally attracted to the more symmetrical image, which is why I chose to paint it. Like most people I tend to breathe a sigh of relief when things are easy to understand and interpret, even if unconsciously. It struck me as both amazingly wondrous, holy shit, the big bang is real!, and slightly comical look how perfect we thought it would be.

You can view more still images from the project on the artist's site

For more work by Jeff Frost, visit http://www.jeff-frost.com/.

This post originally appeared on The Atlantic.

 

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. a photo of Northern Virginia's Crystal City.
    Life

    When Your Neighborhood Gets a Corporate Rebrand

    From National Landing to SoHa, neighborhoods often find themselves renamed by forces outside the community, from big companies to real estate firms.

  2. A new map of neighborhood change in U.S. metros shows where displacement is the main problem, and where economic decline persists.
    Equity

    From Gentrification to Decline: How Neighborhoods Really Change

    A new report and accompanying map finds extreme gentrification in a few cities, but the dominant trend—particularly in the suburbs—is the concentration of low-income population.

  3. Environment

    No, Puerto Rico’s New Climate-Change Law Is Not a ‘Green New Deal’

    Puerto Rico just adopted legislation that commits it to generating all its power from renewable sources. Here’s what separates that from what’s going on in D.C.

  4. A photo of a teacher at Animo Westside Charter Middle School in Los Angeles.
    Equity

    Can Opportunity Zone Tax Breaks Be a Boon for Charter Schools?

    The charter school movement is eyeing the tax incentives in the federal Opportunity Zone program to help fund school construction.

  5. People eat and drink coffee inside a small coffeehouse.
    Life

    The Disappearing Old-School Coffeehouses of Kuala Lumpur

    Traditional kopitiams, which serve sweetened coffee in no-frills surroundings, are a part of Malaysian national identity, but their survival is precarious.