The Magic Lantern Society

New Light on Old Media

Welcome to Issue 29 of New Light on Old Media

This is Jordi Pujades 
Based in Barcelona, he appears in the guise of Professor Sioux Plau, combining live circus skills and conjuring tricks with similar imagery from the magic lantern. You can see excerpts from his stage performances here on his website.

Welcome to this slightly more shadowy than usual autumnal edition of our e-letter.

Mervyn Heard : Editor

Shades of Southeast Asia


The British Museum in London is currently staging a free exhibition exploring shadow show performance old and new, as practised in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. The exhibits are drawn from the museum's own unique Southeast Asian shadow puppet collection.  
21st century examples now embrace items such as political bureaucrats, airplanes and mobile phones.  There is more information here. The exhibition runs until 29 January 2017


Caws and Effect

Mind of a Snail  is a Vancouver based puppet company that has been developing their puppetry and projection work for several years now. In their current and most popular show Caws and Effect they appear as crows offering their own strange insight into crow-life.  On the 17 and 18 November they wil be performing on the archipelago of Haida Gwaii, British Columbia.  But if you simply can't get there you might want to catch some of their work here on their website with details of future up and coming performances in Canada and beyond.

The World Turned Upside Down

Pierre Delavie is a French designer who attached a canvas about 13,000  feet square onto the front of the Concierge building located on the Ile de la Cite as part of the Nuit Blanche Festival which took place in early October. Describing it as 'an urban lie' its intention was to confuse viewers by inverting part of the building's façade. You can view a larger version and read more about it here or visit Pierre Delavie's own site here.

The Raven Pops Up


I hate to remind you that Christmas is approaching at a mighty gallop, but you might like to consider this for a different kind of gift. The latest edition of Edgar Allen Poe's seminal work The Raven  is now available in pop-up form. For my money this is a beautifully designed book and you can see a 'performed' version here on the 'best pop-up books' website or buy it here .

If this doesn't appeal to you as a Christmas gift I guess there's there's always the Game of Thrones Colouring Book

Don't Just Sit There !

..when you could be making peep-shows from your used toilet rolls. 

That's what painter, illustrator and collage artist Anastassia Elias does. The finished miniature dioramas work best when there is a soft light behind them illuminating the cut out figures and situations that dwell within.There are multiple examples of her toilet roll worlds to be seen and enjoyed here on her website.
There is also a link to a book
Rouleaux, containing many of her designs and the offer of some T shirts which create their own optical effect of being able to see right through the wearer.

Hastings Evening Post

Britain has a number of story-telling festivals which are usually held in the Autumn and Winter.
Hastings, on the south coast of England, has one of these which this year runs from 7 - 13 November and will feature several talking lamp-posts delivering suitably spooky tales to those shivering beneath them. These lamp-posts have been designed by local company Shared Space and Light and you can see some of their incarnations in action here.


The Spirited Professor Pepper


The eponymous Professor Pepper - he of the performing ghost - has just had a pub named after him/it. It's in sunny Leytonstone, North London where the Professor breathed his last in the year 1900.  The pub also has a very nice lantern logo - see below.  I haven't been to the pub yet, but I feel it may need further research. An article about the pub appears here.


Shadow Box Art


I have an abiding rule in connection with this e-letter, never to include items for sale on e-bay, which is fine because I found this item on Etsy.  It's a unique shadow box designed by an American artist Robyn Martins which features a simple lantern slide and part of a Shakespeare sonnet in a nice little box with wheels on it.  Robyn has an online shop where you can discover other odd and charming items. 
Homegrown Shadowbox Art is here.

More About the

Magic Lantern Society

If you have an interest in research or performance involving the magic lantern or other forms of vintage visual media  you might want to consider joining The Magic Lantern Society. We publish a regular quarterly printed journal and meet on a regular basis in the UK and other parts of Europe.
For further information and back issues of this e-letter go to  

You will find our sister organisation The Magic Lantern Society of the US and Canada here:


New Light on Old Media Issue 29, November 2016
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