Lego Penrose Stairs Illusion

Seems when M. C. Escher created his famous lithograph Ascending and Descending (all the way back in 1960.), he didn’t have a slightest clew how many people will get inspired by this exceptional deceiving work! Just look how cute R. Watson’s escher-inspired Lego Penrose turned out to be!

But what I also think, is that it couldn’t hurt encouraging your little toddlers to try and construct something similar on their own! Not only will you motivate them to “mathematically” analyze the 3D space, they will also learn the beauty behind optical illusions, and educate themselves while doing it! When Escher chose to construct this deception, he placed the staircase on the roof of a building and structured the building to convey an impression of conformity to strong (but inconsistent) vanishing points. He has the right vanishing point higher than the left one.



19 Replies to “Lego Penrose Stairs Illusion”

  1. Just look at the smuck grin at his face thinking he rules the world by walking up and up to the highest place.
    Pathetic how he doesn’t realize he is the joke of the day, not able to get any higher!

    (Talking trash about Lego makes me feel good about myself…) :(

    1. it has a start and an end. its NOT impossible!
      it goes up, turns, carries on going up, turns and then finishes. its just the angle the photo is taken that makes it look endless.

  2. .. and the inconsistent perspective on the steps. These kind of shots are best taken from a long distance with a long lens to minimise perspective distortion.

  3. Nice inspiration, thank you.

    I rebuild it with my kids.

    [img]http://dl.dropbox.com/u/7590352/LegoPenroseStairsSceleton1024.JPG[/img]

    1. Now pictures from Nintendo 3DS available:
      [img]http://3d-photo-contest.nintendonetwork.net/contest/images/phocagallery/2012-04-08/thumbs/phoca_thumb_l_extra_23212-1812189258.jpg[/img]

  4. if anyone here had some sort of measurable eye sight you would notice that the ‘top’ step is incredibly dis-proportinate to the step prior. the Penrose steps are about SCALE, not some kid whose been able to build some simple lego steps and take a photo at reasonably right angle

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