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Dead medium: Peepshows
From: (Stephen Herbert)


Not too much in print about peepshows, but the following

are worth having:

'Peep Shows', written, printed and published by Paul

Braithwaite. The author uses his own pen-and-ink sketches

of peepshow engravings, photos,and paintings to guide us

through the enormous range of peepshow types, from 17th to

20th centuries; 'back' peep shows, 'caravan' types, etc.

Includes notes on panoramas, dioramas, and mutoscopes. A

good introduction to the subject. 40page A4 pbk, available

from the author, 65 Sandown Road, Brislington, Bristol BS4

3PL.(L36.50p, plus something towards mailing).

'Der Guckkasten = Einblick-Durchblick-Ausblick'. Five

German specialists in pre-cinema contributed to this well-

researched and beautifully colour-illustrated hardback (in

German). Megalethoscopes, Polyorama lorgnette, Engelbrecht

cut-out views, etc. Excellent.publisher: Fusslin Verlag,

Stuttgart, 1995 ISBN 3-9803451-2-2 Fax 0711 339903.

'Die Welt im Kasten' by Thomas Ganz. Ganz is third

generation from a Swiss family that started in the audio-

visual field making magic lanterns, well over a century

ago. This book is based on his premise that for centuries

we have been looking at the world through (and by means

of) a series of boxes = the camera obscura, the magic

lantern, the perspective box, the Peepshow, the

photographic camera, the Cinematographe, etc. Conceptually

important and jam-packed with illustrations of dozens of

types of dead media; Physionotrace portraits, panoramic

cameras, Zograscopes. Includes early magic lantern

Pub: Verlag Neue Zurcher Zeitung, 1994. ISBN


85823 507 5.

An English-language (text-only) booklet is being

produced by The Projection Box (small publishers in

London, in which I am a partner)to accompany this book,

should be available next year.

Stephen Herbert (