Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

World’s earliest “moving picture” of a magician discovered and to be screened for first time at Dana Centre, London

28.07.2005


The earliest "moving picture" of a magician – which was created for a scientific study on magic in the 1890’s – will be shown for the first time tonight, Wednesday 26 July, at the Science Museum’s Dana Centre in South Kensington, London.



The pictures were created during a study by famed psychologist and creator of the IQ test, Alfred Binet, as he investigated the psychology of magic.

Psychologist Professor Richard Wiseman, who discovered the pictures in a Paris archive, will screen them as part of The Science of Magic event at the Dana Centre - the UK’s only dedicated venue for adults to discuss contemporary and controversial science - in London on 27 and 29 July.


Alfred Binet, head of the Experimental Physiology Laboratory at the Sorbonne, was interested in whether the hand is quicker than the eye and approached a well-known chronophotographer, Georges Demeny, to capture sequences of images of conjuring tricks.

Demeny’s technique involved taking several stills of moving objects in fast succession. It had been used by Eadweard Muybridge in the 1870s to establish whether horses take all four feet of the ground when they trot and by Demeny’s colleague Etienne Jules Marey to discover how cats land on their feet when they fall. Demeny is regarded as one of the pioneers of cinema.

Binet wrote up the results in 1894 claiming that the sleight of hand was obvious when it was photographed in this way.

“After much detective work I tracked them down to the ‘collection des appareils’ in the Cinémathèque Française in Paris,” said Professor Wiseman.

“The magician in the moving pictures was a well known French sleight of hand artist called Raynaly, who performed various magic tricks for the camera. Only one set of photographs still exists which shows Raynaly vanishing a ball. I took stills of the 23 frames and re-animated them, thus bringing him back to life. The trick he performs is impressive and still works as well as modern day trick. It’s fantastic to be able to screen this for the first time at the Dana Centre in London.”

“This is a very interesting discovery”, said Michael Harvey, Curator of Cinematography at the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television. “Cinema itself is a trick of the eye and from the start was adopted by magicians such as David Devant and Georges Méliès for the purposes of trickery and fantasy. This shows how in its earliest manifestation it was also used to deconstruct the mystery of magic.”

The science of showmanship and psychology of magic will be explored at two unique evenings of spectacle, discussion and illusion on 27 and 29 July at the Dana Centre, which is fast developing a reputation for creating innovative science events for adults.

The events – which are for adults only - will be hosted by one of the UK’s leading psychologists and former magician, Professor Richard Wiseman (University of Hertfordshire), and will involve jaw-dropping performances by critically acclaimed Las Vegas magician Jeff McBride as well as a live demonstration of sophisticated eye tracking equipment from Dr Gustav Kuhn (University of Durham).

The Science of Magic is part of The Magic Circle’s centenary year.

Lauren Gildersleve | alfa
Further information:
http://www.danacentre.org.uk

More articles from Communications Media:

nachricht New Technologies for A/V Analysis and Search
13.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Digitale Medientechnologie IDMT

nachricht On patrol in social networks
25.01.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO

All articles from Communications Media >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Ocean atmosphere rife with microbes

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

Neutrons observe vitamin B6-dependent enzyme activity useful for drug development

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

NASA finds newly formed tropical storm lan over open waters

17.10.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>