Alive Without Breath

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The reason why I chose this artwork was because of the shock effect it gave me when I first saw it. I couldn’t believe that these weren’t real aquatic creatures in bowls, buckets and glass cups. I mean, that’s no place for them, but they just look so life-like. The reason why I like these so much is because it makes me question whether I can trust my eyes to look at something for only a second and understand what it is. It kind of gets me thinking about what is real and what isn’t real. Not often do we see art that is supposed to deceive us, and then when we find out what it really is, we are just in awe of it. Well for me I was in absolute disbelief until I saw the process of how they’re made. I can’t say there’s anything I don’t like about this art. But if we’re talking about the intent of the art, then I don’t like the idea of deceiving the viewer, no one likes to be deceived. I don’t think this kind of art reminds me of anything we’ve seen in class. It’s a painting technique that uses layers of resin and acrylic paint, which I don’t think we’ve seen in class yet. And also I don’t think we’ve seen any art that is meant to deceive us. If we’re going to try and put any label on what kind of art this is, I’d say this is realism because this is as realistic as it gets. I actually first found some of these pictures on Twitter. When I saw them and found out it was art I was like, “That right there is going to be my blog post presentation.” I initially didn’t believe it was art and I thought it was some kind of joke. The person who posted the pictures didn’t give the name of the artist and they had no idea who made them, so I had to do some digging. It took quite a long time to find out who actually made them. But alas, I found out these are made by Keng Lye who is from Singapore. He says his artwork is inspired by Riusuke Fukahori who pioneered using resin as the medium of his artwork. If you want to see the process of how Keng makes his art, there’s a video below that will show exactly that. This is a style I think is incredibly unique and eye opening. I hope you guys enjoyed this art as much as I did!


1. When you first saw these, did you think they were real aquatic creatures?
2. Has anyone seen art that was made to deceive you in such a way that when you found out what it was, you were in disbelief that it was real art?
3. What do think about art that looks so life-like, that at first glance you couldn’t tell if it was really art?

Dean Garber


13 thoughts on “Alive Without Breath

  1. I agree with you, when you first see these images the creatures look very real. I like the one with the gold fish and with the green algae. When you first look at them the creatures look completely real. I like to believe the artist painted them to make their audience really look and see the painting. With a lot of art I feel a lot of the audience looks at a piece of art for maybe a couple of minutes and move onto the next one. With this kind of art it makes the audience wonder and really look at the piece of art a bit longer than normal. I find this type of art to be interesting because it is cool to see a painting can have an image that looks to real and for the fact it makes you wonder.

  2. I completely saw this and said “Why the hell is there a picture of a bunch of goldfish in a bucket? Artists are weird sometimes.” That is incredibly lifelike and the more of this I see, the cooler it gets. It’s one of those things that you keep looking at it and have to just accept that it isn’t real. This feels sort of like the street art where you see it from one perspective and it looks funky and really strange. Then as you get in the correct line of sight, it almost stands out like an optical illusion. I would imagine a lot of this is done with perspective, but I have no idea. I’m a computer person so I really know nothing about Art. I haven’t seen anything like this in person. I think this type of art really shows a huge attention to detail. Focusing on the little specifics and practicing over and over until you get it just perfect. It’s incredibly well done.

  3. When i read your blog and found out they were not pictures, i had to go back up and look at the art pieces again. It is incredible, i still can’t believe my eyes. Details on all the creatures are so life-like that they seem like someone has taken a picture of actual aquatic creatures in a bowl. From the video i was even more amazed when he painted the first layer of fish at the bottom, added a clear coat and painted on top of that for the second layer of fish, which created that 3D effect that you can see when you look into and actual bowl of water where one fish is right under the other one. It’s soooooo incredible. I want to try something like that.

  4. honestly, when I first saw it, I was like” how is this related to art? sea creatures..!!” then as I started reading the blog, I saw amazed by the information that was given. I’m so impressed by this piece of art. I have seen some piece of that looked so much like real life images but as I read along about or focus more in to image I get so surprised and amazed by their work.

  5. Yes! I was definitely deceived. They look so realistic in my eyes. I don’t think i’ve seen anything quite like this, i think 3D art can be quite deceiving and you have to look at it for a while to really see it, but other than that i think this kind of art you presented is the most deceiving iv’e come across. I think art that is so life-like is mind-blowing and extremely beautiful. Artists who create it must be crazy talented. I couldn’t begin to imagine the thought process and effort that goes into creating it. It’s amazing!

  6. I definitely thought that it was real sea creatures at first! I was shocked to find out that they weren’t. It is so weird to think about how someone can use paint or markers or any other type of art utensil and create a picture that looks so realistic! I have never seen any other piece of art that looks as realistic as the ones above. I did not know people could create something like that. I think it is really cool and interesting how someone has that capability!

  7. When I first saw the images I did think they were real or possibly photos. The detail is amazing. I watched the video and can’t believe all the planning that goes into the layering of the paint and the resin to give it the 3D look. I really like this medium and would like to have one of these myself. I wonder if they are as convincing in person. I think a lot of what makes it look so real is the highlights and reflections on the top of what is to be the water, and that you are mentally not prepared for it to be a painting.

  8. When your post said these were paintings I had to go back and do a double, then triple take. They are so life-like I’m still having a hard time believing it’s not real. I definitely did not think this was art at first glance. I think art that looks as life-like as this does, is amazing. I would imagine you really have to pay attention to the fine detail in order to get it to look like the creatures are actually there. In the image with the fish it almost looks like the fish are actually moving. This art is very impressive. Love it.

  9. Wow.. I would have thought for sure these were real. I have never experienced this type of art before first hand but then again I would have thought this wasn’t real so who knows. I think a lot of art is done this way.

  10. Yes, these pictures are incredibly life like. I feel as if I can reach into my screen and grab them. I think the only other art that has deceived me like this would be street art where it looks like what they’ve drawn is literally coming out of the ground.

  11. I think this artwork is very unique I love how it looks like you can literally reach into the bucket and touch a fish. I like that is such a different style of work that we haven’t really seen before either. The only kind of deicving artwork I have seen in the post is art with some sort of optical illusion.

  12. Wow this is Amazing! I’ve seen two pieces like this a while ago, but I forgot all about them until today. This is as amazing as street art (on the ground) just in a smaller version. Amazing. These are some artists that need to be awarded prizes. For having amazing idea/thoughts/creativity.

  13. Anyone who can create such art is talented beyond my imagination. It just seems too real to be real. At first thought I thought they were still-life Photography, can’t believe someone actually used paint to create something like this. Amazing how people can mimic nature so closely.
    Any art that catches a persons eye and makes them think is special and this is exactly what this did to me. I love it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s