19 posts tagged Balance
19 posts tagged Balance
It’s been over a year since we last checked in on the gravity-defying balanced rock arrangements created by land artist Michael Grab (previously featured here). Much of his most recent work has been created in and around Boulder, Colorado. For Grab, rock balancing is as much a meditative and stress-relieving act as a form of artistic expression.
"The most fundamental element of balancing in a physical sense is finding some kind of “tripod” for the rock to stand on. Every rock is covered in a variety of tiny to large indentations that can act as a tripod for the rock to stand upright, or in most orientations you can think of with other rocks. By paying close attention to the feeling of the rocks, you will start to feel even the smallest clicks as the notches of the rocks in contact are moving over one another.
In the finer point balances, these clicks can be felt on a scale smaller than millimeters. Some point balances will give the illusion of weightlessness as the rocks look to be barely touching. Parallel to the physical element of finding tripods, the most fundamental non-physical element is harder to explain through words. In a nutshell, i am referring to meditation, or finding a zero point or silence within yourself. Some balances can apply significant pressure on your mind and your patience. The challenge is overcoming any doubt that may arise.”
Grab is inspired by the wise words of Grand Jedi Master Yoda who famously said, “Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try.”
Aside from pitching in the odd penny, most people tend to avoid huge, dark, seemingly bottomless pits. Romanian daredevil Flaviu Cernescu seeks them out, unicycles around the rim, casts a slackline across the diameter, and spends the rest of the day balancing over it. This pitch-black and fathomless concrete pit is a reservoir drain at Lake Iovanu, Romania. Created to flush away excess water the the lake rises, it’s over 200 ft deep, but the longer we look at these photos, the deeper it seems.
Flaviu described his day spent walking around, back and forth across, and simply dangling over the gaping hole as a ‘mesmerising’ experience:
‘It was a combination of fear, wonder and excitement; I totally forgot myself,’ he said. ‘I’ve done technically harder lines but this one was the most psychedelic. The sound of water dripping inside played over the silent sounds of nature all around creating a surreal soundscape.’
Visit Dailymail.co.uk for more hair-raising photos of Flaviu and the depthless drain and, if your palms aren’t sweaty enough already, video footage as well.
A couple months ago we shared an amazing video in which a hamster drove a Volvo FMX truck to illustrate the sensitivity of Volvo’s Dynamic Steering system. Now Volvo has return with an awesome new demonstration.
This time, instead of a steering hamster, it’s Belgian actor and martial artist Jean-Claude Van Damme performing his famous splits whilst balancing on the side-view mirrors of two golden Volvo trucks driving in reverse. Directed by Andreas Nilsson, the video was filmed in only one take in the warm light of sunrise on a closed-off landing field in Spain. It’s breathtaking to behold.
American street artist ABOVE spent about seven months searching the streets of East London at night in order to find the perfect location to create this awesome new site-specific, multi-layered stencil piece. Entitled Timing Is Everything, the piece depicts a breakdancer busting a move atop the shadow of a curbside parking sign.
Less talk, more awesome tightrope-walking gibbons!
Meet Siam the Lar Gibbon (also known as the White-handed Gibbon), one of the residents of the Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary in Plettenberg Bay, South Africa. Siam prefers to cross this suspension bridge as though he were a tightrope walker. Who are we kidding? Watch this video and you’ll see that Siam clearly is a skilled tightrope walker.
Let’s pay a visit to the Department of Awesome Natural Wonders where we’ll learn about a place called Brimham Moor in North Yorkshire, England. It’s home to a number of balancing rock formations “caused by the Millstone Grit being eroded by water, glaciation and wind,” over the course of many millenia.
The astonishing stone formation seen in these photos is called Idol Rock, a 15-foot-high, 200-ton monolith that balances perfectly atop a tiny pyramidal base.
"…the giant rock formation has been performing its amazing balancing act for as long as anyone can remember, defying the laws of physics and leaving the visitors of Brimham Moor scratching their heads in awe. Also known as The Druids Idol or The Druid’s Writing Desk, this unique attraction sits on a tiny lump of rock only one foot in circumference. Photos of it have been circulating on the internet for years, with many claiming it is just the result of Photoshop manipulation, but the Idol of Brimham is very real, an example of Mother Nature’s artistic talent."
Visit the Brimham Rocks website to learn more about this amazing place.
[via Oddity Central]
Want to see more unbelievable balancing acts? Click here.
Meet Kidogo, a 12-year-old silverback gorilla brought to the Krefeld Zoo in Krefeld, Germany last April to serve as a male companion to two female gorillas, Muna and Oya, in hopes that they will eventually create some little infant gorillas. It turns out that Kidogo is interested in more than just hanging out with the ladies. He’s also got a serious knack for tightrope walking.
"He is unbelievably athletic and acrobatic," says Petra Schwinn, director of public relations at the zoo in western Germany. "He is still young and playful. He really demonstrates a strong degree of joie de vivre.”
Photo by Magnus Neuhaus/Zoo Krefeld
Michael Grab is a land artist who “creates astonishing towers and orbs of balanced rocks using little more than patience and an astonishing sense of balance. Grab says the art of stone balancing has been practiced by various cultures around the world for centuries and that he personally finds the process of balancing to be therapeutic and meditative.”
Over the past few years of practicing rock balance, simple curiosity has evolved into therapeutic ritual, ultimately nurturing meditative presence, mental well-being, and artistry of design. Alongside the art, setting rocks into balance has also become a way of showing appreciation, offering thanksgiving, and inducing meditation. Through manipulation of gravitational threads, the ancient stones become a poetic dance of form and energy, birth and death, perfection and imperfection.
From the Department of Awesome Natural Wonders comes this impressive geological formation - an enormous rock perfectly balanced atop a smooth mound. Located deep inside the forests of Finland, the balancing rock is called Kummakivi:
"There is still no scientific explanation for how the rock, whose given name translates as ‘strange rock’ in Finnish, has wound up in such a perplexing position."
However it happened, it’s a pretty awesome sight. But we don’t recommend standing under it for too long.
[via My Modern Metropolis]
Beijing-based photographer and performance artist Li Wei (previously featured here) doesn’t use any photo manipulation trickery to create awesome self-portraits like these astronaut shots. Instead he relies on carefully placed wires and a finely-tuned sense of balance.