A Million Pictures


17 March 2017
Royal Institution, London, UK

Magic Lantern and Science: Study Day

The Constructing Scientific Communities: Citizen Science in the 19th and 21st Centuries and the A Million Pictures projects are pleased to announce a special workshop, hosted at London’s Royal Institution, to consider the multiple relationships that existed between popular science and the magic lantern, with an emphasis on the long nineteenth century.
Papers will consider magic lantern slides, instruments, and instrument makers, as well as considering issues of curation and performance.
A special attraction will be Jeremy Brooker’s evening entertainment concerning John Tyndall’s celebrated lectures at the Royal Institution. All workshop attendees will be also welcome to join this public lecture without charge.
Attendance is free, but space is limited. To attend, email Dr Geoffrey Belknap: gb224@le.ac.uk by March 1st, 2017. Read the abstracts (.docx)


9:30-10:15 – Coffee on arrival
10:15-10:20 – Welcome by Frank James (Royal Institution)
10:15-10:30 – Introductory Comments

  • Sally Shuttleworth (University of Oxford) and Geoff Belknap (Leicester University) – Constructing Scientific Communities Project.

10:30-12:00 – Panel 1: Approaches to Science and the Magic Lantern

  • Iwan Morus (University of Aberystwyth), ‘Seeing the Light: Fact and Artefact in Victorian Lantern Culture’
  • Sarah Dellmann (Utrecht University), ‘Images of Science and Scientists: Lantern Slides of Excursions from Utrecht University, NL (c. 1900-1950)’
  • Emily Hayes (Exeter University), ‘Fashioned by physics: the ‘scope and methods’ of Halford Mackinder’s geographical imagination’

12:00-1:00 – Lunch
1:00- 2:30 – Panel 2: Magic Lanterns and Museums/Curation

  • Charlotte New and Meagan Smith (Royal Institution), ‘Shedding light on yesterday: Highlighting the slide collections of the RI and relevant preservation’
  • Frank Gray (Screen Archive South-East, Brighton), ‘Working with Archive Collections: Development, Access and Historical Context’
  • Phil Wickham (Bill Douglas Cinema Museum, University of Exeter), ‘Lanterna Magicka: The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum and its lantern collections’

2:30- 3:00 – Coffee break
3:00- 4:30 – Panel 3: Materiality of the lantern

  • Phillip Roberts (York University), ‘Science and Media in the Industrial Revolution: Instrument Makers and the Magic Lantern Trade’
  • Kelly Wilder (De Montfort University), ‘From Lantern Slides to Powerpoint: Photography and the Materiality of Projection’
  • Deac Rossell (Goldsmiths University), ‘Changing Places: Tracking Magic Lantern Culture from Physics to Chemistry to Cinema’

4:30- 4:45 – Closing Remarks

  • Joe Kember and Richard Crangle (Exeter University) – A Million Pictures Project

6:15- 7:15 – Drinks Reception
7:30- 9:00 – Evening lantern show for the general public

  • Jeremy Brooker, ‘A Light on Albemarle Street: John Tyndall and the Magic Lantern’