Before Zoom: Cinema, the Zoetrope, and other Optical Devices
Julie Mellby, Graphic Arts Curator, offers a captivating tour of Princeton University Library's collection of pre-cinema optical devices, rare artifacts designed for shared public entertainment or personal moments of wonder leading up to the invention of the motion picture.
Through a series of live webcams, we will attempt to reproduce the phantasmagoria experienced in the past as we peer into 18th-century peepshows, twirl phenakistoscopes, open a gigantic megalethoscope, and crank a miniature cinematograph. Feel the sense of wonder as still images come to life, turning day to night, causing volcanoes to erupt, and conjuring faces to rise from anamorphic chaos.
Christopher Collier, Executive Director at Renew Theaters, and Jesse Crooks, Operations Director and Head Projectionist, will share some of the history and treasures of Princeton Garden Theater.