Metamorphosis II

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Metamorphosis II
Escher, Metamorphosis II.jpg
ArtistM. C. Escher
Dimensions19.2 cm × 389.5 cm (7.6 in × 153.3 in)

Metamorphosis II is a woodcut print by the Dutch artist M. C. Escher. It was created between November, 1939 and March, 1940. This print measures 19.2 by 389.5 centimetres (7 12 in × 12 ft 9 38 in) and was printed from 20 blocks on 3 combined sheets.

Like Metamorphosis I, the concept of this piece is to morph one image into a tessellated pattern and then slowly alter that pattern eventually to become a new image.

The process begins left to right with the word metamorphose (the Dutch form of the word metamorphosis) in a black rectangle, followed by several smaller metamorphose rectangles forming a grid pattern. This grid then becomes a black and white checkered pattern, which then becomes tessellations of reptiles, a honeycomb, insects, fish, birds and a pattern of three-dimensional blocks with red tops.

These blocks then become the architecture of the Italian coastal town of Atrani (see Atrani, Coast of Amalfi). In this image Atrani is linked by a bridge to a tower in the water, which is actually a rook piece from a chess set. There are other chess pieces in the water and the water becomes a chess board. The chess board leads to a checkered wall, which then returns to the word metamorphose.

See also[edit]


  • Locher, J. L. (2000). The Magic of M. C. Escher. Harry N. Abrams, Inc. ISBN 0-8109-6720-0.