Projection Box Awards


The winners of the 2008-2009 Projection Box Awards for essays on popular optical media to 1900 have been announced. The first prize of £250 has gone to Professor Erkki Huhtamo for ‘Aeronauticon! Or, the Journey of the Balloon Panorama’, described by the judges as “… an excellent piece of well- documented new research. The essay is packed with exciting ideas … expressed with imaginative, speculative and argumentative flair. There is a clarity throughout and an easy, unpretentious turn of phrase which is delightful to read.”

Second prize goes to Mark Butterworth for ‘Imaging a Continent: the George Washington Wilson & Co’s Lantern Slides of Australia’ and third prize to Dr R.M. Callender for ‘The Enthusiastic Amateur of Redhill, Surrey: John Sterry’.

The competition for 2009-2010 has been announced, as follows (note the extension of popular optical media from 1900 now to 1910):


Open to all, applications now welcomed

First Prize £250
and publication in the journal Early Popular Visual Culture
Books (value £100) as 2nd & 3rd prizes

The aims of this award, now in its third year, are to encourage new research and new thinking into any historical, artistic, or technical aspect of popular optical media to 1910, includingearly cinema: photography: panoramas & dioramas: the magic lantern: shadow theatre: optical toys, and to promote engaging, accessible, and imaginative work.

Essays, of 5000 to 8000 words, may be co-authored. Although the judges welcome international submissions, all essays must be in English. Work must be the author’s own,
and not previously published. Deadline: 30 January 2010 for further details, rules, and application form.

The Projection Box was established 1994 by Stephen Herbert & Mo Heard.
We publish and distribute books and CD-roms on silent film, popular optical media, and visual culture. Current titles at:

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