[Villa La Pietra, via Bolognese, 120, Florence, Tuscany, Italy. Stairway to lower terrace]
Site History. House Architecture: First half 16th century, purchased by Arthur Acton 1907. Landscape: Arthur and Hortense Mitchell Acton. Other: Arthur and Hortense Mitchell Acton owned the villa in 1925. Also known as Villa Incontri. Today: House and garden now a New York University study center.
On slide (printed): "Edward Van Altena" and "71-79 W. 45th St., N.Y.C." (slide manufacturer).
Slide for lecturing on "Old World Gardens."
Title, date, and subject information provided by Sam Watters, 2011.
Forms part of: Garden and historic house lecture series in the Frances Benjamin Johnston Collection (Library of Congress).
Published in Gardens for a Beautiful America / Sam Watters. New York: Acanthus Press, 2012. Plate 202.
The lantern slides first produced for the 17th century's “magic lantern” devices. The magic lantern, also known by its Latin name Lanterna Magica, an image projector that used pictures on transparent plates (usually made of glass), one or more lenses, and a light source, used for entertainment. The earliest slides for magic lanterns consisted of hand-painted images on glass, made to amuse their audiences. After the invention of photography, lantern slides began to be produced photographically as black-and-white positive images, created with the wet collodion or a dry gelatine process. Photographic slides were made from a base piece of glass, with the emulsion (photo) on it, then a matte over that, and then a top piece of a cover glass. Sometimes, colors have been added by hand, tinting the images. Lantern slides created a new way to view photography: the projection of the magic lantern allowed for a large audience. Photographic lantern slides reached the peak of their popularity during the first third of the 20th century impacting the development of animation as well as visual-based education.