# Ascending Staircase Animation

By on April 25, 2011, with 19 Comments

There’s a great chance you’ve already seen something similar, or at least have a vague idea who Maurits Cornelis Escher was. In case you you haven’t, he was the famous Dutch graphic artist, most known for his impossible structures (Ascending and Descending, Relativity…) and various tessellations.

Today’s article features one of the animated variations of Escher’s Ascending and Descending. In reality it would be impossible to construct staircase similar to this one, however there have been some semi-successful examples in the past.

Let’s conduct a simple thought experiment: could you isolate the separation point, supposedly this object was actually a real-life construction instead, viewed from carefully selected angle?

19 Responses
1. Kelsey says:

I think the separation point would have to be at the junction at the back.

• Loudclaw says:

Wow. This is weird, gimme the Lego blueprints.

2. max says:

this is a very interesting website. could I ask you something?
I’d like to know if there’s name for the optical effect you described at the page:

http://www.moillusions.com/2008/12/black-lips-illusionary-cd-cover.html

also, do you know if there’s a software available in order to reproduce this effect?
thanks.

3. This is a really clever illusion, but this poor little man has been running around on my screen all day!

4. Care Bear says:

My life in a nutshell.

5. Natasha says:

i don’t get it!

6. Bryan D says:

If you look closely, he is walking backward along the near wall. This makes him descend to the start again :p

7. shut up kid says:

pretty coool for an amateur……

8. ZL123 says:

This illusion again! Love it (Kinda)!

9. I remember this optical illusion from college. It’s one of the better illusion created. I agree with Kelsey, the separation point is at the back.

10. vic says:

Easy if not have same number.

11. kk says:

12. edward says:

I believe it’s in the construction of the closest set of stairs. since it’s close it appears to be ascending when it’s actually descending… possibly both long walls are descending. Just was more obvious to me being the front wall. It’s clever use of perspectives.

13. howie says:

The trick is incline steps at a decline.
two steps up 3 steps down

14. Joseph says:

He must be late for something