(NB: Not our usual day!)

Gustav Kuhn

Friday, May 2 2014 at 7:30PM

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60 Old Woolwich Road, Greenwich, London SE10 9NY

Gustav Kuhn

What's the talk about?

PLEASE NOTE : This event happens on FRIDAY 2nd of May, breaking our normal '1st Wednesday of the Month' rule.

Magic is one of the oldest art forms, and for centuries magicians have created illusions of the impossible. Some have used these illusions as demonstrations of supernatural powers. However, advances in Psychology and Neuroscience offer new insights into why our minds are so easily deceived. I am a Magician and Psychologist with an interest in researching some of the mechanisms involved in magic. Instead of relying on supernatural powers, magicians have developed powerful psychological principle to distort our perception and thoughts. In this talk we will explore some of the principles used by magicians to distort your perception. For example, we will look at how magicians use misdirection to manipulate your attention and thereby prevent you from noticing things even though they might be right in front of your eyes. Alternatively, magicians may manipulate your expectations about the world and thus bias the way you perceive objects and can even make you see things that aren’t necessarily there. At first sight, our proneness to being fooled by conjuring trick could be interpreted as a weakness of the human mind. However, contrary to this popular belief, I will demonstrate that these “errors” reveal the complexity of visual perception and highlight the ingenuity of the human mind.

Dr. Gustav Kuhn worked as a professional magician and it was his interest in deception and illusions that sparked a curiosity about the human mind. Gustav is a senior lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, and one of the leading researchers in the science of magic.