This Man Built an Impossible Object

While there's a whole world of scientific inquiry into optical illusions and how the brain processes impossible-seeming visual stimuli, you don't often see these impossibilities being created as real life objects. In fact, it's crucial for many optical illusions — like M.C. Escher's stairs — that they can't actually exist as a physical object without some kind of structural trick. The impossibility of their existence is part of what's so confusing in the first place.

But the Shop Built YouTube channel saw that impossibility as a challenge and found the structural trick to building something that will momentarily dumbfound your brain. They have created a familiar impossible object in a wood shop and it's a pretty convincing optical illusion from the right angle.

Thankfully, the video isn't just an illusion but reveals the creation of the object. They let you in on the secret, even if The Alliance of Magicians is most certainly going to excommunicate the channel. Step-by-step instructions aren't included, but you can surmise how you might create one yourself if you're in the market for a weird centerpiece that will confuse guests at your next dinner party.

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Dustin Nelson is a News Writer with Thrillist. He holds a Guinness World Record, but has never met the fingernail lady. He’s written for Sports Illustrated, Men’s Journal, The Rumpus, and other digital wonderlands. Follow him @dlukenelson.