By: Rebecca Solnit
305 pages, B/w photos
In 1872, an Englishman photographed a running horse in California and succeeded for the first time in capturing an image of high-speed motion - the crucial breakthrough that eventually made movies possible. His patron, the philanthropist tycoon Leland Stanford, wanted to know if his trotter Occident ever lifted all four hooves at once - never suspecting what innovations Muybridge's experiments would unleash. From Muybridge's invention came Hollywood and from his patron Stanford's sponsorship of technological research came Silicon Valley - two industries that have most powerfully shaped the modern world. The story of Muybridge's own life while he was making his motion studies is equally riveting. He became an internationally renowned inventor and photographer whose pictures of the war against the Modoc Indians and the monumental landscape of the American West have now become classics - and in a blaze of publicity, stood trial for the murder of his wife's lover. Gripping and erudite, this is a fascinating biography of a true pioneer and the larger story of how time and space were revolutionised in the nineteenth century.
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