From Magic Lantern to the Internet

21-23 July 2003
University of Exeter



An international conference organised by the AHRB Centre for British Film and Television Studies, and the Bill Douglas Centre, University of Exeter.

This conference is the culmination of an AHRB project investigating the continuities between nineteenth-century optical recreations and subsequent screen technologies.

One of the most dominant critical concerns of recent years has been the attempt to understand the impact of a multimedia culture. The scope and limits of a multimedia culture have become associated with issues of virtual reality; interactivity; media convergence and hybridity; body/technology couplings, etc. These familiar narratives, however, have a much more extended history than is often realised.  

Multimedia Histories will examine the long genealogy of multimedia usage and discourse. From the 19th C onwards, the proliferation of screen technologies and optical recreations has been an important element of popular culture. Moreover, the exhibition and consumption of these entertainments was often defined by their interrelationship. The mid nineteenth-century drawing room, for example, typically included stereoscopes and praxinoscopes alongside the magic lantern.

The conference is keen to pursue a comparative approach by focusing on specific historical moments of convergence and hybridity. In so doing, it aims to locate the aesthetics of the new media in relation to an intermedial tradition of public and domestic forms of screen entertainment. The principal question it hopes to address is this - to what extent do recent multimedia technologies extend established features of cinema, television, and the panoply 19th C and 20th C optical recreations?


21 JULY 2003
4:00-6:00pm Registration
6:00-7:15pm Introduction and plenary speaker
7:15pm on Opening reception and dinner
22 JULY 2003
9:30-11:00am Panel session Panel session Panel session
11:00-11:30am Tea/coffee break
11:30am-1:00pm Panel session Panel session Panel session
1:00-2:00pm Lunch
2:00-3:00pm Plenary speaker
3:00-4:30pm Panel session Panel session Panel session
4:30-5:00pm Tea/coffee break
5:00-6:30pm Panel session Panel session Panel session
Evening Dinner - own arrangements
23 JULY 2003
9:30-10:30am Plenary speaker
10:30-10:45am Tea/coffee break
10:45am-12:15pm Panel session Panel session
12:15-1:00pm Lunch
1:00-2:30pm Panel session Panel session
2:30-4:00pm Plenary speaker and closing remarks


Professor William Boddy (CUNY)
Professor Ian Christie
(Birkbeck, University of London)
Professor Richard Grusin (Wayne State)
Dr Roberta Pearson (Cardiff University)


LIST OF SPEAKERS (as of 18/6/2003)

John Adams (University of Bristol)
'Hindsight: an account of a practice-based research exploration of interactive aesthetics for a multi-screen cinema platform'

Kaveh Askari (University of Chicago)
'Photographed Poses and Narrative Movement in Alexander Black's Picture Plays'

Dr Patrizia Di Bello (Birkbeck, University of London)
'From the album page to the computer screen: collecting photographs in the home'

Dr Wendy Bird (Independent Scholar)
'Pre-cinematographic spaces and audiences: their audiences and control in early 19th century Madrid'

Dr Jonathan Bollen (University of New England, Australia)
'As Seen on TV: Social dance pedagogy, kinaesthetic cross-over and the animatic imaginary'

Mark Broughton (Birkbeck, University of London)
'Intermedial Extensions: Brideshead Revisited and its Distribution History'

Dr Richard Crangle (University of Exeter)
paper title tba

Theresa Cronin (Goldsmiths, University of London)
'The Limits of Cinema: Corporeal Spectatorship and the Desire for Sensation'

Ine Van Dooren (University of Brighton/SEFVA)
paper title TBA

Dr Jon Dovey (University of West of England)
'A Short History of the Ideology of Interactivity'

Paul St George (London Metropolitan University)
'Marey and Baron: Chronophotography and Multimedia'

Dr Charlie Gere (Birkbeck, University of London)
'John Cage's Early Warning System'

Seth Giddings (University of West of England)
'Frame by Frame Into the Future: an animated history of CGI'

Frank Gray (University of Brighton/SEFVA)
'The 'Vision Scene''

Professor Alison Griffiths (CUNY)
'Woven Spectacles: Medieval Tapestry as Precursors to Imax'

Chris Hales (Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design)
'Kine-Automat Revisited'

Dr Imam Haman (University of Exeter)
'More shows and striptease at the lecture: early representations of the mummy'

Dr Peter Hamilton (Open University)
'Wide: The Panoramic Photograph and Modern Visions of the World'

Dr Helen Hanson (University of Exeter)
'Framing Portraits: Approaches to Art in 1940s' Holloywood Cinema'

Dr Michelle Henning (University of West of England)
'The Return of Curiosity: The World Wide Web as Curiosity Museum'

Dr Sara Gwenllian Jones (Cardiff University)
'Excavating Gameworlds'

Jaeho Kang (University of Cambridge)
'The Phantasmagoria of the Entertainment Industry: Walter Benjamin's account of the Panorama as the Ur-Symbol of Cinema'

Dr Alison Kavanagh (University of Leeds)
'Spaces of Film Consumption and Local Environment: A reconstruction of cinema-going in West Yorkshire since the Twenties'

Aimee Kendall (University of Texas at Austen)
'Forensic Animation: Using Computer Simulation as Rhetorical Evidence'

Yuna de Lannoy (Birkbeck, University of London)
'Benshi and Film: Japanís Early Hybrid Art'

Professor Martin Lister (University of West of England)
'Vanishing Points: virtual and visual culture'

Davide Lombardo (European University, Institute of Florence)
'Arlecchino's magic lantern: Multimedia mental frames and the first Italian newspapers'

Katerina Loukopoulou (Birkbeck, University of London)
'Aesthetics of Expandability and Internediality in Films on British Pop Art'

Luke McKernan (BUFVC)
'The History and Manifestations of Colour Music'

Dr William Merrin (Leeds Metropolitan University)
'You've Been Maimed!: Bullet Time and the Hyperrealisation of Perception'

Dr Kit Messham-Muir (University of Sydney)
'Multimedia and the Museum: New Technologies and Spectator Experiences in Contemporary Museums'

Jeanette Monaco (University of Bristol)
'Since The Sopranos is not a soap-opera: Debates over meaning in'

Dr Juergen E Mueller (University of Bayreuth)
'Visions of an Intermedia History of Early Television'

Hyon Joo Yoo Murphee (Syracuse University)
''Signifying' the Digital Space: Contestations and Possibilities'

Dan North (University of Exeter)
'From Android to Synthespian: the myth of mechanical life'

Dr Mark Paterson (University of West of England)
'The Sense of Immersion: Haptic and Optic technologies'

Dr Michael Punt (University of Wales, Newport)
'Invisible histories: the hardware/software hybrids'

Lisa Purse (University of Reading)
'Out of the Console, onto the Screen: Lara Croft and Action Cinema's Visual Style'

Professor Lauren Rabinovitz (University of Iowa)
'More than Movies: A History of Somatic Visual Culture through Hale's Tours, IMAX and Motion Simulation Rides'

Dr Diane Railton & Dr Diane Nutt (Teeside University)
'From Paper Cut-Outs to 'Skins': Dressing and Undressing 'Play' Characters'

Dr Tatiana Rapatzikou (University of East Anglia)
'Virtual Technologies and Interactive Communities'

Martin Rieser (Bath Spa University)
'Spatialized interaction with New Video and Cinematic Forms'

Russell Richards (Southampton Institute)
'The Origins of a Digital Aesthetic: Hogarth and his Legacy'

Dr Amy Sergeant (Birkbeck, University of London)
'From 'The Wonders of Derbyshire' to Wookey Hole'

Andrew Shail (University of Exeter)
'A peep behind the scenes of the silent stage: The Film Fan Magazine Hits London'

Sheila Skaff (University of Michigan)
'The Transition from Silent to Sound Film in Poland, 1929-30'

Dr Damian Sutton (Glasgow School of Art)
'Rustling Leaves and Blimp-shots: CGI, Lumieres, and perception after photography'

Dr Peter Thomas (University of Luton)
'Art and Technology Then and Now, or, What Do Film and Video Artists From the 1970s Find so Interesting About the Multimedia'

Dr Vanessa Toulmin (University of Sheffield/NFA)
'Spectacular Realities: Early Film Programming and Mitchell and Kenyon'

Dr Cathryn Vasseleu (University of Technology, Sydney)
'The light of the Praxinoscope'

Christophe Wall-Romana (UC Berkeley)
'The Integration of Cinematic Devices in French Poetics: 1836-1905'

Dr Helen Wheatley (University of Reading)
'The limits of television? Natural History programming and the transformation of public services broadcasting'

Dr Michael Williams (University of Southampton)
'The Many Tales of The Rat: Intertextual History and the 1920s Film Fan'

Dr Jason Wilson (Griffith University)
''Participation TV': Videogames, contemporary visual culture, feedback and the 'problem of the player''

Andrea Zapp (Manchester Metropolitan University)
'Networked Narrative Environments'

Maxa Zoller (Birkbeck, University of London)
'Expanded Cinema: A Phenomoenological History of Projection Art'



Ann Jones, Birkbeck, University of London

Conference Organiser:

Dr John Plunkett/Dr James Lyons, University of Exeter


Last modified 10 July, 2003 ;