May Buckingham

Ceramics Trompe-l’oeil Sculpting with Rachael Jones

Rachael Jones' Ceramics 1 class in Spring 2022 worked on a Trompe-l’oeil Sculpting Nourishment Project where they created clay sculptural pieces that convey a meal or plate with some kind of meaning to the artist and viewer.

( See below for a photo gallery of the finished pieces. )

A definition of Trompe-l’oeil from Wikipedia:
"Trompe-l'œil (/trɒmp ˈlɔɪ/ tromp LOY, French: [tʁɔ̃p lœj]; French for 'deceive the eye') is an art technique that uses realistic imagery to create the optical illusion that the depicted objects exist in three dimensions. Forced perspective is a comparable illusion in architecture." -- Wikipedia contributors. (2022, January 14). Trompe-l'œil. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 20:01, April 6, 2022, from

Of course, the 3-dimensional part is taken care of in this instance, as the pieces are sculptures, but the use of shape, color, and texture was used to simulate various types of food, plates, utensils, and other things.

From the stated Objective for the course:
"Learn how to utilize the best technique for your form/ability, while paying close attention to detail and proportion through realistic replication. You will also be learning about historical and contemporary ways in which artists use food as metaphors for meaning. Either by choosing your favorite meal, or using food as a metaphor, hone your artistic voice through your aesthetic decisions (how you choose to interpret the form) and guide how the viewer makes meaning through intentional compositional choices (how you arrange the different elements of your piece together)."

Some of the pieces are almost mouth-watering and quite effective at replicating the intended food and food combinations depicted.

Photographs provided by Rachael Jones