Fotografie di Fantasmi [SPIRIT PHOTOGRAPHY]. By Dott. Enrico Imoda. Preface, in French, by Charles Richet. Text in Italian. Fratelli Bocca, Torino, 1912. 254 pp. Quarto (10 x 7 in./25 x 18 cm.) First edition. Stiff printed wrappers. Deckled edges. 49* tipped-in silver gelatin prints printed by G. Simoni of Rome, from the original glass negatives (prints measure from 6 x 4 ½ in./15 x 11 cm. to 2 ½ x 2 in./6.5 x 5 cm.)
NOTE: Original tipped in slip of paper on p. 88 reads (roughly translated): "At the request of 'Vicenzo', this photo may not be published at the present time. It will be sent one year after this book's publication to those who return this slip to the publisher with a payment of 50 lira."
An important volume that lies at a truly singular intersection of spirituality, science and art! Documents the ongoing,
otherworldly program of 100 séances between 1908 and 1910
organized by him with the medium Linda Gazzera. The
precise goal of these séances was to photograph spirit 'materializations'
that the glamorous young woman was claiming she
could produce. The photographs document séances in
which a spirit is summoned, surrounded by the medium
and the séances’ attendees, including Dr. Imoda. Since the séances
took place in total darkness, the exposures were made
with a magnesium flash--an early use of the technique--at the moment when the summoned spirit made itself known. These materializations
were therefore NOT seen by the participants; they were only
revealed later by these photographs.
The publishers emphasized the advantage of using original
photographs instead of reproductions for a better 'reading'
of these materializations.
"In the preface, the French physician
Charles Ricket,who was to win the Nobel Prize in 1913 for
his work on physiology, endorses the phenomena as genuine.
In the afterward, however, the occult specialist Guillaume de
Fontenay casts doubt upon their authenticity, noting their two
dimensional aspect, shadows indicating more than one light
source, and the medium’s well-known interest in fashion and
drawing.He suggests that Imoda, had he lived longer,might
have reached the same conclusions."--The Perfect Medium.
Photography and the Occult.
Very Good+; tightly bound; wear to edges with some shallow creasing at corners; moderate spine creasing; slight loss to backstrip at base of spine. Nice copy of a rare and important volume!