Stone-Balancer Keeps Building, Even as People Keep Toppling His Creations

Uliks Gryka, the Albanian immigrant who has been building carefully balanced stone sculptures along the Hudson River since this summer, recently created a new sculpture just below the pier around 72nd Street in Riverside Park.

After West Side Rag reader Susan sent the photo above, Gryka explained in an email what he’s been up to. After we wrote about the sculptures in August, they started getting more attention in the press, with the Times writing about him the following month.

“The photo is showing my last small installation built last Thursday.

Since the Times article I’ve been making several ones but as usual they were taken down by people. I received positive feed-back from the vast majority of people, although there are some voices of dissent and discontent about them. The parks authorities have been friendly and haven’t raised any problem.

Actually I am still building, and want to accept the ‘weather challenge’ of the winter. And see how the sculptures resist and look under snow/ice.”

ART, OUTDOORS | 20 comments | permalink
    1. Ye Olde Englishe Teachere says:

      Re: “Stone-Balancer Keeps Building, Even as People Keep Toppling His Creations”

      Just like Sissy-Fuss ….ooopsie, make that “Sisyphus”

      “He (Sissy-Fuss, née Sisyphus) is being punished … by being forced to roll an immense boulder up a hill, only to watch it come back to hit him, repeating this action for eternity.”

      Of course, today Old Sissy-Fuss’s cause would probably be taken up by the NYT’s Leading-Bleeding-Hearts and given Pg. A1 prominence, and then there would be all sorts of Pro-Sissy and Anti-Sissy commentary…ad nauseum.

      • Zulu says:

        Hey guys!

        Check out the life of the party over here.

      • Christian says:

        I like ’em. Doesn’t sound to me like he’s complaining. Just keeping at it.

      • Mark says:

        Ye Olde, what’s your creative and interesting contribution to the world? It’s easy to sit back and snipe at other people’s efforts.

        I happen to think Uliks’ sculptures are great. Who are the morons who keep knocking them down… and why?

        • Ye Olde Englishe Teachere says:

          Re: “It’s easy to sit back and snipe at other people’s efforts.”

          Please read more carefully!
          Had you done so you would NOT have thought that there was ANY criticism directed toward the “stone-balancer”.

          The ONLY “criticism”, which you obviously missed, was directed toward the official taste-and-opinion-maker for aging Manhattan Libruls: The New York Tiresome…uhh, sorry…The New York TIMES.

          Since you failed to discern this, your grade has been reduced from a “B” to a “C+”.

    2. Jean Mensing says:

      The Stone Bulder/balancer gives me hope in these terrible times. Keep on….Not Sisyphus, What a revolting analogy. shame

    3. Tim says:

      Kudos to Uliks for persevering. His simple yet elegant stone art lifts the spirits of whoever see it.

    4. Margaret says:

      You see these all the time in Hawaii, where they’re disliked by the residents – they appear to be part of the traditional culture but they actually are completely not, they’re overly repetitive and they detract from the natural setting by superimposing a built element all over it.

      I kind of like them as a one off, but more likely they turn into something like the gross locks people throw all over the Brooklyn Bridge – cute when unique and spoiled by overuse.

      • Michael says:

        A one off in this viewing wouldn’t give it justice, have you even gone to the site? It’s quite magical and remarkable and makes people stop their mundane lives for a bit of thought and wonder.

    5. Robin says:

      I love them!! Great work!
      and sorry about all of our fellow humans that get off on being selfish & destructive😩

    6. Mark says:

      I think it’s fine for the sculptures to be built, and fine for them to be taken down.

    7. jezbel says:

      They’re beautiful. Those of us who walk by them marvel at the precision necessary to find just the right rocks at just the precise angle. They’re little pieces of art.

    8. JM Kass says:

      Leave his work alone! He’s trying to do something attractive and artistic. The last thing NYC needs is cultural oppresson!

    9. Albert says:

      He is an artist, making lovely work. Praise him!!

    10. H&H-Lover says:

      Or maybe it was the wind! AMmmm I right??

    11. Kathy says:

      Good work. Keep it up

    12. Demi says:

      So artistic and lovely. They are like sand sculptures!

    13. Wendy says:

      I love it. Public art made out of nature. What could be bad?

      I sue wish The West Side Ragwould start moderating the comments section. Too many negative-for-negative’s-sake comments from trolls.

    14. eva z says:

      i discovered the one on 96th st.
      absolutely loved it! if you look closely to the balance of the rocks – it would seem impossible. The natural granite designs unbelievable. who would not want these beautiful sculptures. I’m sorry but much more beautiful than the art in the city’s public spaces.