Pop Culture

Coffer Illusion will leave you squarely confused — or do you see the circles?

What a lovely image of some black-and-white lines that form rectangles and squares.

Or ... is it?

Apparently there are 16 circles hidden within the illusion. Do you see them?

Meet the Coffer Illusion, a finalist in the 2006 Best Illusion of the Year Contest created by Anthony Norcia, formerly of the Smith-Kettlewell Eye Research Institute that's now going viral thanks to some exposure by Boing Boing.

Are you still staring? So are we. Go back and check out the image once more.

See the circles yet?

The "Coffer" name doesn't come from a person. Coffer is an architectural term for a series of sunken panels in square, rectangular or other shapes.

Arranged just so, they create an image which our brain eventually resolves into a series of circles.

Go back and take another look. Can you see them yet?

This is just one of the many optical illusions that have gone viral online. Apparently we just love being fooled by everything from toy train tracks to moving dots to big red spots.

According to Relatively Interesting, the Coffer Illusion "plays on the fact that the visual brain is heavily geared towards identifying objects. 'Pixels' are grouped to form edges and contours, shapes, and finally objects."

Ah, now it's starting to come into resolution. Knew you'd come 'round eventually!

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