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Reception to follow. 

Admission is free. Reservations required. RSVP beginning Tuesday, September 3, at 10 a.m. 

The USC Libraries invite you to celebrate the opening of the exhibition Spectral Science: Visions of the World Beyond, which gathers photographs, rare books, magic lantern glass slides, and other evidence that blurs the line between the logical and illogical, the natural and supernatural, drawn from the collections of the USC Libraries and The Academy of Magical Arts, with a fascinating panel, live magic performances, guided tours, and a reception. 

Magic lanternist, animator, and filmmaker Melissa Ferrari; USC Provost Professor of Art History and English Kate Flint; historian of science and USC Libraries Carrollian Fellow Franziska Kohlt; marketing research and insights innovator Ted Skidmore of USC Annenberg; and magician Matthew Felten of the USC School of Dramatic Arts will convene for a wide-ranging conversation about the shared histories of scientific inquiry and spiritualism as a form of technological spectacle. Explore how literary minds such as Lewis Carroll and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle viewed new technologies and scientific discoveries of the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a means of accessing “other worlds” beyond human perception, and how spectacle, trickery, and manipulations of reality shape our politics and global entertainment culture to this day.  

The conversation will be followed by captivating performances by students from the USC Magic Association, curator-led tours of the Spectral Science exhibition, and a reception in the Treasure Room. 

Spectral Science: Conjuring the Invisible World is the first of three events exploring the surprising intersections of science, illusion, and spiritualism in support of the exhibition Spectral Science: Visions of the World Beyond at Doheny Memorial Library.  

Related events: 

Phantasmagoria: Lighting the World Beyond 
Wednesday, October 30, 2024, at 7:30 p.m.  
Los Angeles Times Reference Room, Doheny Memorial Library 
For more info, click HERE

The Magic Castle 
Sunday, November 17, 2024, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 
The Magic Castle, Hollywood 
For more info, click HERE

Presented by USC Visions and Voices. Organized by Rebecca Corbett, Tyson Gaskill, Anne-Marie Maxwell, Derek Christian Quezada Meneses (USC Libraries), and Franziska Kohlt (USC Libraries Carrollian Fellow).

Photo: Pope Like Trestle Bridge, courtesy of Melissa Ferrari

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