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Escher, close up

4 February until 28 May 2017

Photos never before exhibited from Escher’s personal archive

Maurits Cornelis Escher used photography as a source of inspiration and as part of his preliminary studies, as will be evident for the first time in the exhibition Escher, Close Up. Escher took hundreds of photos during his life, but he never exhibited them. Although they transcend the level of glimpses into his family life, these photos were considered private by Escher. He compiled neatly ordered photo albums comprising snapshots of wonderful memories and interesting images. After his death, his archive was only viewed by a select group of historians.

Escher photographs his wife Jetta with the Italian town Atrani, on the Amalfi coast, in the background.
M.C. Escher, Metamorphosis III, (detail Atrani) woodcut, 1939-1940 / 1967-1968

For the first time, Escher, Close Up will enable you to see a selection of images from Escher’s personal photo archive. His photos not only offer insight into his mind and his daily life, they also provide an unparalleled vision of his way of working as an artist. They show how he strived towards composition and visual illusion, for instance. To look at his photos is to focus on what fascinated the artist, revealing his perspective on the world. Escher has never been so close. See the world through Escher’s eyes and see what he was focusing on. See Escher, Close Up

George Arnold Escher on the seesaw, 6 September 1929
Maurits Cornelis Escher and George Arnold Escher, 29 December 1926

Our curator Dunja Hak writes about the role photography played in Escher’s life and work and how this exhibition came to existence.

The extraordinary in the ordinary

From frame to cutout

From photo to fantasy

Escher, close up: a fresh look at the famous artist and his work

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