In the 1800s, a pivotal optical experiment resulted in the discovery that flipping quickly between still images can create the illusion of movement. This optical illusion was the genesis of animation and cinema.
Richard Belzer began collecting 19th century optical toys and magic lanterns about 40 years ago. He has been working to curate a virtual online museum of these early animation pieces. With the publishing of a tumblr site of animated GIFs, the centuries-old moving images are now entering the digital age. Bridging these technologies is certainly interesting, but even more so is the wild and strange imagery that the collection showcases.