Rock Balancing

A few years ago I have started a habit of building a stone marker when I visited a waterfall. A sign that I had been there. Here is an example

Stone marker

And here is a collage of many more. It is a nice pastime and doesn’t require much effort. Just collect a few suitable rocks and see how tall you can make the tower. A downpour, or strong wind, and it will be gone. So I leave only a temporary marker, which I find quite symbolic for human existence in general..:-)

collage

It can also be done in a very different, spectacular way! Recently a friend sent me an email with pictures of amazing balancing rock formations. Like this one

Gravityglue1

The “maker” is a young Canadian artist/designer, Michael Grab. He has a website Gravity Glue where you can find many more of his creations.Here are a few

Balance-Art-By-Michael-Grab_09Balance-Art-By-Michael-Grab_05Gravityglue3Gravityglue2

I find them extremely, almost unearthly, beautiful. They seem to defy gravity, although as a physicist  I understand of course that it is gravity which keeps the pieces of rocks in place, at least temporarily.

Not surprisingly some of the comments on his website suggest that it is all fake, that he is using superglue, or metal pins to keep the parts together. Watch this short YouTube video (until the end!) for a convincing proof that it is NOT fake…:-)

You can find more YouTube videos on the Internet, for example this one. Although I do not share his philosophy, I admire his patience and perseverance.

2 thoughts on “Rock Balancing

  1. I am amazed ! A lot of Physics application involved. I noticed that it is not balanced by the individual piece but by the overall set up.. this intrigues me as it is like planning way ahead that the whole set up will balance. How on earth??… Is it by feel or natural instinct or complex computations of gravitational laws?

    • You are right. My “toy” towers are built stone by stone, always stable. His creations are only stable after the top piece has been added. When this would exist in nature, it would be proof of “intelligent design”, it can not be “evolution”, haha

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.