(All images (unless stated) by 3D Joe and Max, reproduced with permission)
3D Joe and Max are experts in creating giant optical illusions. Unexceptional walls, walkways, and sometimes even ceilings, suddenly open up to reveal hidden rooms or gaping crevasses; while mythical creatures, unexpected objects and wild animals pop out of solid concrete.
The late Max Lowry (1976-2010) and his professional partner, Joe Hill, formed ‘3D Joe and Max’ together eight years ago and Joe continues their shared legacy; using chalk and paint to create these fun anamorphic images which, when viewed from the correct angle, appear three dimensional.
The captivating 3D pavement drawings, or paintings, work most effectively when spectators step in to them; aiming to appear to other viewers as if they are interacting with the elements depicted. 3D Joe and Max aren’t alone in their field. Other 3D pavement artists include Germany’s Edgar Mueller and Manfred Stader, Britain’s Julian Beever and America’s Kurt Wenner.
In fact, 3D art, or anamorphosis, has been studied for centuries and many spectacular examples were seen in public hundreds of years ago. These include, for example, Andrea Pozzo’s famous frescoes (above, left) which create the illusion of a dome and of upward floating figures on ceilings of the Church of Saint Ignatius in Rome.
What sets 3D Joe and Max apart, however, is their world record-breaking 2011 Reebok CrossFit advert. Created in London’s West India Quay near Canary Wharf, at a length of around ten double decker buses parked end to end, it was judged the largest and longest anamorphic piece of artwork ever. Find out more at their website and Tumblr.