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By on October 29, 2009, with 68 Comments

We’ve featured Felice Varini dozen of times, so I encourage you to check some of our previous articles to learn the background and goals this particular artist set for himself. It’s because I dislike repeating myself. In his newest installation, the buildings in the town of Vercorin in the Swiss Alps contribute to this impressive piece. The set was called Cercle et suite d’éclats. But what I recon interests you the most, is how all of this was turned into practice. Well, the pattern was projected on the town from the vantage point, and then traced and painted. If you shoot a photo from the same spot in daylight, you’ll quickly realize how the town looks flat – almost like a postcard. The interesting part is how he got the whole town to approve this? Don’t miss the panoramic view on Varini’s website. More photos from different angles are included below…

Village Turned into Optical Illusion

Village Turned into Optical Illusion

Village Turned into Optical Illusion

Village Turned into Optical Illusion

Village Turned into Optical Illusion

Village Turned into Optical Illusion


68 Responses
  1. Bianca says:

    Although the illusion is fabulous, I can’t believe that, that many people would have allowed him to paint their decades old architecture. Looking at the photos, it looks like reflective silver paint but maybe its a thin adhesive bound foil that peels off easily? If it is paint, shame on him for marring such harmonious,indigenous architecture.

  2. Jay says:

    Stop being so uppity and just enjoy the cool looking picture.

  3. lul says:

    im thinkin its foil

  4. Care Bear says:

    Contrary to what Bianca says, I applaud the artist. Who knows how permanent the paint is? Besides, try to get that many people to come together for a project like that in this day and age. Cheers.

  5. BraDRoBBo says:

    Thats awesome!lol!:) Woot woot =) hehe

  6. Lien says:

    I don’t think it is paint either.

  7. NEO says:

    That’s Aluminium foil.

  8. melofelo says:

    That is sooo wild! I wondered how he’d get anyone to agree to having their houses painted like this. But then in the closup shots, it looks like aluminum foil, perhaps sticky backed, that peels right off.

  9. Jay says:

    Why is there silver lines all over my house?
    Get off my lawn, you crazy kids!

  10. tmb says:

    Not really related but that church is beautiful.

  11. Rudy says:

    It is cool, but the problem with this kind of stuff is that it looks good only from one very specific point of view. Most of the time you are just looking at random slashes of paint.

  12. Aesi says:

    Bianca, the question of what is and is not the right thing to do with their town is between the people and the artist, it’s not for you to judge. However, do you have absolutely no concept of how many antique villages have traded their heritage for tourism dollars? How is this any more offensive? Unless you can sufficiently argue that there is some inherent difference in value between old and new art AND you know for sure that the townspeople were unhappy about it, there is no reason to feel offended by this.

  13. Sarah Smith says:

    Cool illusion! I hope you’ll post more stuff like this.

  14. Anusha says:

    Daaaaang! I can’t believe someone actually did that! And convinced everyone in the town!
    That’s so cool!

  15. I seriously doubt it’s paint!

  16. gamerah says:

    wow took me a while to realize the significance of the circles, good job

  17. Garry says:

    I’m sorry Bianca, but I think that you should lighten up. Why should architecture stop exploring, just because it is harmonious and/or indigenous. Is it fair to condemn anything to always be in the past. Three cheers to Felice for adding something fascinating to something that is already beautiful and congratulations to Vercorin for their sense of community.

  18. Peter Gorham says:

    Here is the link to how the circles were made – and yes it is clearly foil tape.


    You will have to click on “suite” a few times to see the whole history – well worth looking at.

  19. popesantaxiv says:

    And there, my friend Bianca, is where you are mistaken. What you take to be a “marr” on architecture and landscape lies the true beauty art, for art it is.
    I think the effort and consistence involved in making this is absolutely mind-boggling. It is perfectly done. And I’m quite sure if the artist hadn’t gotten the approval of the whole town, he wouldn’t have gone along with his project.

  20. Ray says:

    It looks like it might be aluminum foil or something – I guess if it was an adhesive then they could remove it easily after. Pretty cool!

  21. Knix says:

    how was it possible for them to paint every house in the village?

  22. dickhead says:

    yeah i think of the same way, cuz
    it wasnt a great illusion just, and the only thing they do is fuck the town

  23. Annette says:

    Its nothing other then awesome. Anyone that thinks differently has no creative mind at all.

  24. Ann Reid says:

    that’s crazy! I’d love to see it for myself.

  25. Gordon says:

    This is the best work of art that I have seen at your site to date. I tried to find inconsistencies, but instead found that the houses in the fourth photo are the same as the houses in the bottom right of the main photo. Wow.

  26. albert says:

    It’s just aluminium film. easily removable.

  27. TeaShoes says:

    As Bianca said, if it is something like foil and can be taken off easily it might be ok, but if it is paint… then theres probably no point of putting it there because it just wrecks the old houses

  28. Norm says:

    Fabulous! Thanks!

  29. Isaiah Alvarez says:

    thats what i was going to say bianca lool im like wow! but never the less amazing

  30. Rob says:

    Indeed it does look like aluminum foil instead of paint. In that case it’s easily removed as well.

  31. guest says:

    I agree with Bianca.
    But still it is a brilliant Illusion, and just love this type of mind-fucks!

  32. Qbama says:

    I’m not sure if that is sane anymore.

  33. Iuthisaam Muhammad Saeed says:

    good one, lol, is this a trick to attract ghosts?

  34. Bianca says:

    Sorry, Jay…didn’t mean to sound too “uppity” or to offend you. I appreciate and love most forms of art; love illusions sometimes even more because they’re a combination of not only creativity but genius as well. I love this illusion too and called it fabulous. What inspired Felice Varini to conceptulize this piece??? However,I also have appreciation for the artist called TIME whose work on stone and wood and clay can never be duplicated. (I still think it’s foil.)

  35. Tracy O Bryan Murray says:

    Beautiful pictures and scenery and a great illusion!

  36. Bianca says:

    Thank you first for your polite disagreements from some (many) and kind support from others. I don’t believe this is permanent paint so, please relax, I take back my “shocked” reaction. Aesi says it is not for me to judge, but are we not all doing just that when we write our opinions here? Is she not judging me? And money, Aesi, yes! That’s a good reason to do this to one’s generations-old home. I know what some women do for money and they are not considered works of art. Trust me, Garry, I am lightened-up and having fun with this. And thank you, popesantaxiv, I am often wrong (as my daughter reminds me) and I find myself agreeing with everything you say. The juxtaposition of perfect circles mathematically lined up against a natural setting is beautiful. But the devil in me would like to lobe one more ball into your court and ask you whether you would take the brilliant mark of a hip New York graffiti artist across the face of the Mona Lisa as a stroke of genius or a “marr”? 

  37. Croaker says:

    That’s no illusion and certainly no art. Felice Varini is working with the aliens. He is sending them a message or something, in preparation for their invasion. We are doomed. Doomed! You hear?
    Maybe the whole town has already been taken by body snatchers, have you thought of that?


  38. Detective Kitty says:

    if anyone doesn’t see the link that someone has posted…well you should check it out. It has proof that they used aluminum foil, so can people stop arguing over the matter and just chillax and enjoy the art?


  39. beano says:

    i agree with bianca, she wasn’t saying it isn’t art, she was just curious to whether the town let them do that to such historic buildings!

  40. FREE RADICAL says:


  41. Marcus says:


    Must have been a huge projector..

  42. mike says:

    huge projector,, or just a little red dot from a laser.

  43. fanteshia says:

    hmmm..nice one!

  44. George says:

    Nouveau Art: Very inspiring and intriguing

    How did you do it!

    I don’t mean how you got all the people together, but the method you used.
    maybe its in at a relative spot?.

  45. ankurdhikoli says:

    beautiful picture and nice scenery also

  46. ankurdhikoli says:

    An optical illusion (also called a visual illusion) is characterized by visually perceived images that differ from objective reality. The information gathered by the eye is processed in the brain to give a percept that does not tally with a physical measurement of the stimulus source.

  47. Chelsea says:

    Its called tin foil. its fun. its innovative. different. creative. genious even.

  48. Angmar says:

    … epic foil

  49. libby says:

    the tin foil is awesome! i had an idea about that acouple years ago but this is better than i imagend!!!!! EPIC WIN

  50. Elliot says:

    cool am i first one?

  51. Abhi says:

    g8 illusion..1st photo looks perfect

  52. Annacrome says:

    This is very cool, but there is one thing wrong with the accompanying commentary; the word ‘recon’. I believe that is supposed to be spelled ‘reckon’. The word ‘recon’ is usually short for reconnaissanse’ or ‘reconnoiter’. It’s interesting to find this error associated with a site which pokes fun at others’ grammatical mistakes, but I guess, after all, we all make them at some point. I do, though not often.
    Regards, Anna

  53. angela says:

    wow!so amazing!how they can do that?its very difficult to do and to think with,,^_^

  54. me awsome says:

    who died?

  55. me awsome says:

    I think the third 1 looks really weird =P

  56. person guy says:

    ok this is completly mean cos its over a church

  57. Jordyn Puck says:

    Cool seen it before looks mad lol

  58. lizz kaulitz says:

    hahah is photoshop!!! xD lol

  59. Wikus van de Merve says:

    awesome but i dont get it why wasting a lot of time to do this kind of things lol.

  60. Dorky says:

    In the first pic it works as a stereogram as well!

  61. Natasha says:

    hahaha! if he did that to me (considering it is a he), I would stick a fork where the sun don’t shine >:OOO

  62. cyril123 says:

    wow circle

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