If there was a place on Earth you would go and ask yourself “doth my eyes deceiveth me?”, that place would be the Church of St. Ignatius of Loyola in Rome, which is just a block away from the Pantheon.
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The first thing most visitors do when they step inside this church dedicated to the founder of the Jesuit order is look up at the sumptuous frescoes that decorate the huge ceiling. The grandiose fresco painted by Andrea Pozzo depicts the triumph of St. Ignatius and the apostolic goals of Jesuit missionaries, eager to expand the reach of Roman Catholicism across the world. The ceiling appears to be a high and vaulted decorated with statues and populated with flying figures. In reality the roof is flat. Pozzo gave the ceiling an illusion of height using anamorphic techniques. A marble disk set into the middle of the nave floor marks the ideal spot from which observers might fully experience the illusion.
This isn’t the only illusion found in the church.
Learn about more of them over at Amusing Planet.
(Image Credit: Andreas Faessler/ Wikimedia Commons)