French sculptor Matthieu Robert-Ortis is gaining attention for his moving wire sculptures that change shapes. No, the sculptures themselves don’t move, but your perspective changes as you move around it! In one of his works, a pair of elegant giraffes turn into a giant elephant, as you walk past. Which creatures you see depends on the angle you’re viewing the wire sculptor from. He has aptly termed this work ‘The Revolution of Giraffes’.
Although wire is a common medium for sculptors, using it as Matthieu does is unique indeed. He developed this style of wire sculpting just three years ago and termed such sculptures anamorphose or metamorphose. He shares the meaning of these terms on malaymail.com, thus, “Anamorphose is a figuration and abstraction, and metamorphose is a figuration, abstraction, and figuration.” He uses both anamorphose and metamorphose to morph his animal sculpture into different animals, depending upon one’s perspective.
This 26-year-old sculptor got interested in sculpting when attending an art school in Lyon, France. However, he left the art school after getting disillusioned by their conceptual approach to art. He started drawing and painting on his own and created pictures with a special perspective. He then transferred these special effects to wire sculpting.
Matthieu is inspired by George Rousse, a French contemporary artist known for large-scale photographs depicting painted alterations within existing spaces; Felice Varini, a Swiss artist who creates anamorphic illusions of flat graphics, superimposed on 3D spaces; and Markus Raets, a contemporary Swiss artist, best known for sculptural works that explore the nature and boundaries of human perception.
Matthieu made his first sculpture from a supermarket trolley that required €1 in the slot to be taken. He began using this ‘€’ sign for the ‘O’ in his name when signing his name on his sculptures. This was to highlight the financial problems faced by artists and the arts. Coming back to his first sculpture, so delighted was his mother with this piece that she displayed it at home. When her friend saw it, she told him to hold an exhibition of his works and also helped him arrange one.
Today, Matthieu has created 42 wire sculptures – 30 anamorphose and 12 metamorphose. These include elephant-giraffe; man-crab; drone-eagles and octopus-kangaroo. Before he starts on the main sculpture, he makes a small prototype. If he likes it, he goes ahead with the big sculpture.
The moving wire sculptures of Matthieu Robert-Ortis have a viewership of over 84 million on Facebook.