Balancing rocks, marshmallows, Jenga pieces, or just about anything gets complicated as soon as you get some height going–but not if you ask Michael Grab, an artist with the skills of a real magician. His impossible looking stacks of rocks appear to be an optical illusion, but they are most certainly not. No tricks involved here, Grab’s balanced rocks are 100% the real deal.
Using intense concentration and meditative focus Grab is able to stack rocks in ways that seem to defy all logic. In the video included at the bottom of this post, you see Grab sitting without any movement, making just the slightest adjustments to each rock. Within 6-minutes he has created something that surpasses incredible.
In an artist statement Grab’s writes, “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.”
Grab’s site, Gravity Glue exists to highlight the meditative practice of stone stacking created by Grab himself. All images on Gravity Glue site, and throughout this post, are real rocks that Grab has arranged barehanded. He admits to using, “patience, adaptation, slow-breathing, steady hands, and a plethora of other practiced skills…”
While traveling through the beauty of Boulder Creek, located in Boulder, Colorado, USA, throughout the summer of 2008, Grab first began messing around with stacking rocks. A curious habit turned into a “prolific creative passion” which now involves daily practice alongside meditation. The 2 go hand and hand, although that’s not the only reason Grab practices rock stacking, he quickly realized that his work proved anything is possible, and people love that stuff, heck we need it!
How does Grab make the rocks look like this? He explains on his official website that an object needs at least 3 points of contact to balance. He says that he uses finely tuned senses to hear and feel where the nicks and creases in the rocks are located, because it is within these spaces that the rocks can hold together.
So while a rock appears to be weightless, practically floating over the rock beneath it, if you look closely they are linked together through a ridge in each rock.
Grab writes of the highly evolved process, “…the most fundamental non-physical element is likened to meditation; finding a zero point or silence within myself. Some balances can apply significant pressure on the rational mind and patience.” He goes on to add, “One of the greatest challenges is to overcome any doubt that may arise.”
And isn’t that the biggest challenge all throughout life? Yet it is doubt that holds us back from our full potential time and time again. Grab’s unique artwork proves the best thing you can do for yourself is live without doubt.
Grab’s work really does make you feel like nothing is impossible. Even the most trying and difficult circumstances can be overcome, made to work, and in such wonderful ways.
You might not believe it looking at these photos, but watch the Stone Balance demonstration video created by Michael Grab below and you will see for yourself that he really does stack these stones in impossible ways, and using only his hands.
Even with children loudly playing in the waters just a short distance behind him, Grab works up intense concentration as he focuses every last ounce of energy into constructing this nearly impossible configuration of rocks.
The wildest part, the bottom rock isn’t even on a flat surface! As if standing on their own wasn’t enough, Grab splashes the balancing stones with water repeatedly in proof of its apparent strength.
See for yourself in the video below: