What Isn't There: Noma Bar's Negative Space Illustrations

An Israeli artist combines social commentary with an acute awareness of the visual power of emptiness

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I've been a longtime fan of Israeli illustrator Noma Bar, whose mastery of negative space—the space between and around the subjects of an image, which can frame another subject in and of itself—never ceases to amaze, adding a new layer of thoughtfulness to the classic figure-ground illusion of perception. As he recently redesigned a handful of Don DeLillo classics for Picador Books, I was reminded of my favorite Noma Bar classic: Negative Space—an anthology of Bar's most compelling work from various high-profile magazines, commenting on some of today's most pressing sociopolitical issues with the artist's signature provocative subtlety.

A sneak peek of the book follows, but I highly recommend you indulge in its entirety—it's a rare tapas bar of brain food and eye candy.

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Thought-provoking and visually stunning, Negative Space is the kind of blend of aesthetics and ethics I'd like to see more of in the world.


This post also appears on Brain Pickings.
Images: Courtesy of Noma Bar

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Maria Popova is the editor of Brain Pickings. She writes for Wired UK and GOOD, and is an MIT Futures of Entertainment Fellow.

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