Registering the Invisible in Fin-de-Siecle Europe

Fall 2023 GGR Recipient

Jennifer Marine (Art History)

Historians of science and technology describe a “critical movement” in the latter half of the nineteenth century towards a rapid reformation of nature that pushed the limits of representation. Nature and its theories could no longer be contained within the realm of visible possibility. With discoveries involving ether physics, sound and radio waves, and subatomic particles, amongst others, the invisible spectrum held new opportunities and challenges to representation. This project explores the visual culture associated with attempting to represent these invisible, spectral, and imponderable presences, unsettling the disciplinary boundaries between art, science, and technology in this late Victorian era.