Since 2005 we have been building online exhibitions to share with the community at large. We explore all areas of this performing art: performers, composers, writers, designers and builders of magic. These exhibitions are housed and maintained by Magicana. We hope to add to our collection in the near future, so be sure to check back often. In the meanwhile, we invite you to visit our exhibitions:
In the world of magic, there are few performers more instantly recognizable than the “Maestro” Juan Tamariz. With a top hat that is never quite able to contain wild unkempt hair, a crazy manic disposition, and an enchanted violin that plays at the successful completion of every trick, he is one of our era's most revered creators, performers and thinkers. Juan starred in a television series, Chan-tatachán, which ran in Spain from 1992 to 1993 and we have over eighteen hours of performances now in The Screening Room. Come in and explore the wild world of Chan-tatachán!
An extraordinary collection of home movies from 1976 to 1981, meticulously preserved and catalogue featuring many well-known performers including Daryl, Paul Harris, Paul Gertner, Johnny Ace Palmer, Abert Goshman and Mike Skinner... to name but a few. Thanks to Canadian collector, Larry Thornton, this never-before-relased material is now available for all to enjoy in the spirit of sharing wonder.
The Magic Palace
In an age before YouTube and the Internet, The Magic Palace gave viewers a broad sampling of magic acts from North America and Europe from the 1970s and 1980s in an unprecedented scale. Almost lost to history, it is now one of the most important collections of magic performances. Magicana is delighted to share this material and, perhaps, inspire another generation of magicians all over again.
The Devils Playthings
An original short film featuring a concert of sleight-of-hand conceived as a macabre fantasy, performed by David Ben, one of the world’s foremost practitioners of card table artifice, as a tribute to his late friend, the renowned adventurer and tribal art collector, Billy Jamieson, and his collection of artifacts documenting human humiliation and cruelty.
The cup and balls
Magicana presents a series of immersive, fully interactive online exhibitions that explore the history and the mystery behind the world’s greatest magicians and the tricks that they perform.
After one hundred years, Artifice, Ruse and Subterfuge at the Card Table by S.W. Erdnase remains the cornerstone of card conjuring and, for those who want to profit from play, a post-graduate course circa 1900 on the technique of cheating at cards. As this exhibition, created by Jason England and Julie Eng, so artfully displays the book appears perpetually in print, and has spawned numerous variants, here and abroad, and a slew of ancillary discourse, publications and products.
Master Magician Ross Bertram
Meet Ross Bertram, one of magic’s greatest sleight-of-hand artists of the twentieth century, through the eyes of his sole protégé, David Ben. As you will learn from this exhibition – originally developed as an article for Genii magazine (March 2003) – David spent hundreds of hours in Ross’ company for well over a decade. Learn more about this master magician as David recalls their conversations about magic, about family and about life.
The Life and Magic of Stewart James
This exhibition features of one of the most influential authors of magic tricks who ever lived – Stewart James. As you explore the “rooms” of this virtual museum, you will be free to navigate through the magician’s biography, tricks, principles, creative strategies, personal correspondence and more. You will witness how a reclusive, young boy from Courtright, Ontario transformed over the course of his life to become a major figure in magic history.
The Magical Chatterbox, Sid Lorraine
Sid Lorraine was the hub for a great deal of magic in the twentieth century. Even though Sid passed away in 1989, he left, among other things, a handwritten manuscript—his memoirs. Knowing Sid’s love of cuting-edge technology and information sharing, we are certain he would have embraced social media, and in particular, blogging. So, Magicana has parcelled out his story—along with supporting images and ephemera from his family, and from the David Ben Collection—as a weekly blog called, “The Magical Chatterbox.” Currently the blog is under renovation, but will be back soon.
Postcards of Magicians
Magicana is please to share this wonderful collection—originally collected by Msgr. Foy—of over 300 “Postcards of Magicians.” For decades, Msgr. Foy carefully collected and preserved postcards that featured magic, magicians or magical themes. Visit our revised online exhibition which now allows visitors to search for certain magicians or ephemera; to comment or share thoughts and stories about any particular card; and, hopefully, to help us identify the few missing names of postcard subjects.
Bert Douglas: A Family Remembers
Bert Douglas, born in Aberdeen, Scotland in 1897, immigrated to Canada in 1920. In Toronto, Bert’s passion for magic brought him in friendship with other magic enthusiasts including Sid Lorraine, Tom Bowyer, Murray Sumner, Ross Bertram and Johnny Giordmaine. This exhibition, written by his two sons, Russell and Donald and designed by Magicana, fondly recalls Bert Douglas’s lifelong love of magic.