Portuguese artist makes wire animal sculptures that look just like sketches

Viewers must study David Oliveira's sculptures from the right angle to see them come alive 

Jess Denham
Friday 23 October 2015 10:29 BST
David Oliveira is primarily inspired by drawings
David Oliveira is primarily inspired by drawings (David Oliveira)

David Oliveira’s artworks may look like scribbled ink sketches but in fact, the Portuguese artist makes his delicate animal sculptures from wire.

The Lisbon-born sculptor enjoys using wire for its “easy and spontaneous” qualities and has exhibited around the world from Spain and Turkey to the USA and Japan.

He works as close to natural scale as possible but has also explored smaller, more fragile subject matters including grasshoppers, snails, spiders, bees and dragonflies.

Pic: David Oliveira (David Oliveira)
Pic: David Oliveira (David Oliveira)
Pic: David Oliveira (David Oliveira)
Pic: David Oliveira (David Oliveira)
Pic: David Oliveira (David Oliveira)

Oliveira, 35, began experimenting with wire after completing a Sculpture degree with a speciality in ceramics in 2008. He went on to take a masters course in artistic anatomy, focusing on drawing, and life became his common theme.

“Inspiration for what I choose to represent comes from many different places but in the main I am inspired by drawing,” he told the Huffington Post.

To appreciate Oliveira’s sculptures properly, viewers must study them from the correct angle and watch the shapes come alive. He plays on optical illusion and encourages art fans to fill in the gaps with their imaginations.

The sculptures appear as 3D up close but resemble flat pages in a sketch book from a distance. Oliveira has also created some beautiful human sculptures, seen on his website here.

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