Information on Loughborough
Seeing is believing? The neuroscience of magic
Posted on 13/01/2012
University of Leicester
What is the difference between a neuroscientist and a magician?
The link between the two might be closer than we think, as academics will show during a presentation at the University of Leicester today (Jan 13).
The Neuroscience of Magic, a minisymposium on how our brains perceive illusions, will showcase the collaboration between neuroscientists Luis Miguel Martínez Otero and Rodrigo Quian Quiroga with professional magician Miguel Ángel Gea.
Mr Gea will perform a series of magic tricks while Mr Martinez will explain the science behind how the magician can influence our minds.
Rodrigo Quian Quiroga and Luis Martinez have been working together with Miguel Gea since 2008 to investigate the neurological processes and brain functions at work during illusions.
Mr Martinez, a visual neuroscience researcher at the Miguel Hernández University of Elche, in Alicante, Spain, said: “Magicians have been studying how people observe things for 4,000 years. They have intuitions and insights into the visual nervous system that go far beyond our laboratory techniques. They can tell where we will see things and where we will miss things.”
As part of the research, audiences were monitored with eye tracking devices to reveal where people's attention was drawn to – and away from – during the magician's routines.
“Our mental resources are very limited,” Mr Martinez explained. “The world is full of information and somehow we have to find information that is helpful for our survival. The process of filtering information means we are blind to a lot of things that happen around us.
“The study of the neuroscience and magic is a field that has developed recently, and right now there more and more publications coming out.
“We are hoping to find new principles of brain function – if so there will be a benefit to science, and a benefit to society.”
University of Leicester neuroscientist and Professor of Bioengineering Rodrigo Quian Quiroga, who organised the event, said: “I am really interested in the link between art and science. My feeling is that we a have a lot to learn from artists, magicians, painters and musicians.
“It is a lot of fun to study the perception of magic but also very useful and very fruitful. I think that featuring this interactions helps to raise awareness and interest about our research in the general public and also helps to enhance visibility of the University of Leicester.”
The event will be held on Friday 13 January at 4pm in Lecture Theatre 2 of the Engineering Building, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester.
Prof Quian Quiroga's collaboration with Argentine artist Mariano Molina is also currently being exhibited as part of ‘The Art of Visual Perception’ at Embrace Arts, Lancaster Road, Leicester until Friday 27 January.
Latest Loughborough News
Landlords invited to learn more about accreditation scheme
Created: Saturday 22nd of November 2014 10:11:32 AM
A roadshow to encourage private landlords in the borough to join an accreditation scheme will be held in Thurmaston....
UNIVERSITY CHOIR HERALDS CHRISTMAS
Created: Saturday 22nd of November 2014 10:11:31 AM
One of Loughborough's favourite pre-Christmas events returns on Wednesday December 3rd when Loughborough University Choir comes to the Cope Auditorium with its hugely popular annual Christmas Concert....
Read More: UNIVERSITY CHOIR HERALDS CHRISTMAS
Punk Poet to Shake up Loughborough Spoken Word Night
Created: Saturday 22nd of November 2014 10:11:30 AM
Monday 1 December 2014 is the day for the first Speech Bubble event of this new academic year. Speech Bubble is LU Arts spoken word programme and on this first night they bring punk poet Attila the Stockbroker to the stage....
'Footloose' Returns to the Stage
Created: Saturday 22nd of November 2014 10:11:01 AM
Every semester, Loughborough Stage Society direct and perform several shows and they ve just announced that the musical Footloose will be their first show of the season....
Read More: 'Footloose' Returns to the Stage
ITV ON TRACK AT GREAT CENTRAL RAILWAY THIS CHRISTMAS
Created: Tuesday 18th of November 2014 03:11:54 PM
The award winning railway always welcomes Father Christmas during the festive season. On December 10th a camera crew and presenter Lucy Kite will join him for a magical steam train ride through the Leicestershire countryside....
Related Loughborough News
Neuro-magic: Magician uses magic tricks to study the brains powers of perception and memory
Created: Friday 22nd of March 2013 02:03:33 PM
A magician is bringing his magic tricks to the field of neuroscience for his PhD at the University of Leicester...
Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder?
Created: Friday 26th of March 2010 10:03:46 AM
Actually, in its neurons artist and Leicester scientist collaborate to examine the way we see things...
Read More: Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder?
Arts and science combine to explain the mystery of how we see art
Created: Thursday 24th of February 2011 11:02:56 AM
University of Leicester academics are working with Argentine artist Mariano Molina on an exhibition based on neuroscience concepts...
Neuroscience at heart of Jorge Luis Borges literature
Created: Friday 5th of February 2010 03:02:06 PM
Research by a Leicester neuroscientist sheds a new light on the works of the great Argentinean writer...
How Do We Perceive Art?
Created: Monday 21st of September 2009 04:09:52 PM
Artist in residence is to work alongside scitists in a University of Leicester neuroscience research lab...
Read More: How Do We Perceive Art?
Most Read Loughborough News (today)
Mini moto campaign in Loughborough is a crushing success.
Created: Wednesday 2nd of July 2008 03:31:00 PM
14 motorbikes and mini-motos have been crushed after they were confiscated by police in Loughborough during a crack down on young people who drive dangerously and inconsiderately on roads, parks and public places....
Social media 'not to blame' for inciting rioters
Created: Friday 9th of December 2011 03:12:57 PM
University of Leicester researchers are involved in a study of the use of Twitter during the August riots...
Billion euro ESA mission to explore icy worlds of Jupiter
Created: Thursday 3rd of May 2012 04:05:46 PM
University of Leicester scientists involved in new European space exploration mission to the solar system's largest planet...
The Art of Jackson Pollock
Created: Wednesday 6th of June 2007 12:00:00 AM
Charnwood Museum in Loughborough and ArtSpace are offering visitors the chance to explore their own creative talents and produce their own ...
Read More: The Art of Jackson Pollock
Created: Tuesday 29th of April 2008 09:03:00 AM
Ladybirds ( or ladybugs if you are American) are loved by the public but now help is needed to monitor local numbers as an invasive species called the harlequin ladybird spreads across England....
Read More: Ladybird Survey
Most Read Loughborough News (this month)
LOUGHBOROUGH FESTIVAL OF CHILDRENS ILLUSTRATED LITERATURE
Created: Wednesday 29th of October 2014 01:10:30 PM
The first ever Loughborough Festival of Children's Illustrated Literature will be in 2015. The major five-day event will occur between 22 and 26 October 2015 showcasing both new and existing literature aimed for children. ...
Look Before You Book In Loughborough
Created: Friday 31st of October 2014 05:10:46 PM
Food safety experts in the Borough of Charnwood are backing a campaign urging residents to check the food hygiene ratings of restaurants they might be visiting in the run up to the festive season....
Read More: Look Before You Book In Loughborough
Poor BBC Decisions Over Greens
Created: Friday 31st of October 2014 05:10:45 PM
The Leicester Green party is rightfully outraged at the poor decision by the BBC to reject a demand from the Green party to be included in the proposed TV leader election debates, saying that it, unlike the banker funded UKIP, has not demonstrated any substantial increase in support. ...
Read More: Poor BBC Decisions Over Greens
Family fun to celebrate new-look Loughborough
Created: Wednesday 29th of October 2014 01:10:09 PM
Love Loughborough, the partnership between Charnwood Borough Council and the Loughborough Business Improvement District (BID) is about to celebrate a new look to Loughborough this coming weekend - Saturday November 1, 2014. ...
FORMER BBC YOUNG MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR PERFORMS AT LU ARTS
Created: Monday 17th of November 2014 03:11:27 PM
On Wednesday 26th November violinist Jennifer Pike will be performing at Loughborough University's Martin Hall Theatre together with pianist Peter Limonov....