[ih-loo-zhuh-niz-uh m]
  1. a technique of using pictorial methods in order to deceive the eye.Compare trompe l'oeil.
  2. Philosophy. a theory or doctrine that the material world is an illusion.

Origin of illusionism

First recorded in 1835–45; illusion + -ism
Related formsil·lu·sion·is·tic, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for illusionistic


  1. philosophy the doctrine that the external world exists only in illusory sense perceptions
  2. the use of highly illusory effects in art or decoration, esp the use of perspective in painting to create an impression of three-dimensional reality
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012