Marin County-based photographer Jerry Downs captured the following photograph of two cows standing near each other in Idaho. In the dimly-lit photograph, it appears that the two cows share the same body with a head at each end. In trying to figure out which legs belong to each animal, I am reminded of the strange [...]
The following video was created by Guy Wallis and David Lloyd from the University of Queensland in Australia. It was selected as a finalist for the 2013 Best Illusion of the Year contest hosted by the Neural Correlate Society. The video presents an ambiguous pair of cubes that can be interpreted in multiple ways. As [...]
Today’s video arrived in my inbox courtesy of Masodo, a regular visitor to this site. He runs a blog called BlogDogIt where he posts about a variety of things that he finds interesting. The video features a dance routine by eight girls who use clever choreography and black & white costumes to create an ambiguous [...]
In the early 20th century, psychologist Edgar Rubin developed the figure-ground vase (also known as Rubin’s vase). This ambiguous figure can be interpreted as either a vase or two faces looking at each other. Metal Portraits, a company based in Suwanee, Georgia, has taken the figure-ground vase concept to an entirely new level by creating [...]
This figure, created by Peter Ulric Tse, may be interpreted as a series of ‘pyramids’ on the ground plane (pointing upwards )or as the ‘teeth’ of a saw that face the viewer and lie flush with the ground plane. Can you see both interpretations? Which one did you see first?
We have featured a number of works from Italian author and artist Gianni Sarcone in the past. One of my favorite works by Sarcone is the following image title “The Other Face of Paris”. Upon first glance, it is a photograph of a woman holding an umbrella while standing underneath the Eiffel Tower. But can [...]
Looking back through the archives, I was surprised that something from the late Japanese artist Shigeo Fukuda had not been featured on An Optical Illusion yet. During his lifetime, Fukuda produced well over a thousand poster designs (among other artistic endeavors that I am sure we will explore at a later time). Many of his [...]