The ingenious way the slides have been displayed here means they can be enjoyed as intended with a constant source of diffused white light, many such slides are left in wooden boxes in attics and long forgotten.
The magic lantern is the forerunner of the slide projector, and it is one of the most popular inventions of the marvellous world of optical illusion, alongside the Camera Obscura, the Magic Mirror, and various other contraptions that have captivated people for centuries. Magic lantern slides were introduced to Japan via Holland in the mid 18th century. They became ‘Japanised’ and known in the public entertainment media as “utsushi-e” during the late Edo period (1603-1867). However, the educational use of this media began during the early Meiji period (1868-1912), when magic lantern slides were re-introduced by Tejima Seiichi (1849-1918) from the United States in 1874. The popularity of lantern slides among the general public was gradually replaced by cinema.
A visual feast, this is a breathtaking and unique piece that now unifies shards of eastern memory, installation art, lighting and fine art.