Did you ever draw with chalk on the sidewalk or street? Do you remember how fun that was? Over the weekend I was introduced to the drawings of Julian Beever, who takes chalk to the limit, 3 dimensionally that is. It’s a shame his extraordinary renderings only last until a rain comes to wash it all away.
The Englishman who has become known as “the Pavement Picasso” has been creating 3-D chalkings on pavement since the mid-nineties. He does them in the trompe-l’oeil style, a technique that uses realistic imagery to create the illusion that a rendering is 3-dimensional when viewed from the correct angle. He’s done a variety of pieces that include lily ponds, high buildings, people, the globe, Jaws, and the sense of falling. On average, a piece takes three days to complete. Julian Beever also does renderings of old masters, large pastel portraits, murals, and oil paintings. He’s been chalking up pavement in Europe, Australia, and the United States so if time and weather permit, one might get a chance to sidestep a seemingly trecherous fall or pretend to white water raft.
A time-lapse video of Beever creating the white water rafting experience may be viewed at wvgazette.com.