Camera Obscura: On top of this cannon in Aegina, you could literally see the world upside down – Video

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Camera Obscura: On top of this cannon in Aegina, you could literally see the world upside down – Video

On the base of a huge cannon, in 2003 two Austrians, Franz Berzl and Gustav Deutsch, built the first Camera Obscura installed in Greece and the first in the world to capture a 360-degree image

Camera Obscura, as in… Dark Room in Latin. What mystery lies behind this story?

We fly to Aegina, in the wider area of ​​the South Naval Fort of Aegina, located near the settlement of Perdikas on the island of the same name, where naval fortifications were built shortly before World War II and huge naval guns were installed.

On the base of a huge cannon, in 2003 two Austrians, Franz Berzl and Gustav Deutsch, built the first Camera Obscura installed in Greece and the first in the world to capture a 360-degree image.

But what is the Camera Obscura, or Dark Room in Greek? How Camera Obscura works is relatively simple.

It is a completely dark room in which there is a small hole in one of its walls.

What do you see on a bright day on the opposite wall from the hole? You will see the colorful and moving world outside the window – upside down! Magic! This magic is explained by a simple law of physics.

Light travels in a straight line, and when rays reflected from a bright object outside the room pass through a small hole in a relatively thin wall, they do not scatter, but create an inverted image on the wall parallel to and opposite the hole. This law of optics was known in antiquity.

The earliest mention of Camera Obscura was by the Chinese philosopher Mo-Ti (5th century BC).

He was the first to describe the creation of an inverted image formed by rays of light passing through a pinhole in a dark room. Call this dark room the “gathering place” or “locked treasure room.”

Aristotle (384-322 BC) understood the optical principle of the camera obscura. He noticed an image during a lunar eclipse projected on the ground through holes in a sieve, and through the gaps between the leaves of a plane tree.

In the tenth century the Arab scholar Alhazen of Basra built a portable dark tent for observing the sun and wrote a full description of the phenomenon. In 1490 Leonardo Da Vinci described the Camera Obscura in his notebooks.

In 1544 the Dutch scientist Reinerus Gemma-Frisius used this technique to observe the eclipse of the sun. At the dawn of the modern era they built a portable dark box with a lens (a portable camera obscura) that was used as a drafting tool.

In the 17th and 18th centuries many painters used the camera obscura as an aid. Among others Johannes Vermeer, Canaletto, Guardi, and Paul Sandby.

At the beginning of the 19th century the portable camera obscura, with little or no modification, placed a sheet of light-sensitive material and thus became… a camera! This is why we call cameras “cameras”.

During the 19th and 20th centuries, with improved lenses that could project larger and sharper images, many camera obscura buildings were created on coasts and in areas of great natural beauty around the world.

Unfortunately, the Camera Obscura of Aegina is… collapsing.

Since 2014, the artists-creators have now declared their inability to cover the annual maintenance as well as the necessary repair work, and since then the building has been falling into disrepair and destruction…

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