The interval during which a painting is mistaken for the real thing, or a real thing for a painting, is the triumphant moment of trompe l'oeil art. The artist appears to be potent as nature, if not superior to it. Almost immediately, though, the spectator's uncertainty is eliminated by his recognition that the counterfeit is counterfeit. Once the illusion is dissolved, what is left is an object that is interesting not as a work of art but as a successful simulation of something that is not art. The major response to it is curiosity: "How did he do it?"
Arts and Artists
Life and Living