Trompe l'oeil is a style of painting that's so realistic that it appears to be three-dimensional. Theater set designers sometimes use trompe l'oeil to create realistic backdrops for plays.
In French, trompe l'oeil means "fools the eye," from tromper, "to deceive," and l'oeil, "the eye." This perfectly describes what's remarkable about trompe l'oeil; paintings in this style trick your eyes into seeing something with depth, rather than a flat surface. Trompe l'oeil is one of the oldest optical illusions, going as far back as ancient Greek and Roman murals.