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Devices of Wonder: From the World in a Box to Images on a Screen

Tuesday, November 13, 2001 - Sunday, February 03, 2002, Los Angeles, California USA. Through nearly 400 objects from the 17th century to the present, Devices of Wonder explores our long and playful entanglement with the magical technologies and artful instruments that we have placed between our eyes and the world. Centuries before the advent of cyberspace, humans created a host of gadgets to enhance visual perception. Mirrors, microscopes, magic lanterns, automata, dioramas, panoramas, perspective theaters and metamorphic toys have all expanded human perception at different times, amplifying reality into more vivid virtual events. Devices of Wonder draws from the collections of the Getty Research Institute, the J. Paul Getty Museum, and lenders worldwide to bring together several hundred of these beautiful and bizarre ancestors of our modern museums, cinema, cyborgs, fiber optics and computers. Several works by contemporary artists such as Lucas Samaras, Cindy Sherman, Jeff Wall, Tiffany Holmes and James Turrell resonate with the complex lineage of our seductive new technologies. This exhibition was organized by the Getty Research Institute. For more information, contact: Raegen Kennett at The Getty Center, 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, California 90024, USA; Tel.: 310-440-7360; Fax: 310-440-7722; Email:; Web: