To accompany Argentinian artist Leandro Erlich’s Dalston House installation in East London, the Barbican commissioned Guerilla Science to run a two-day workshop to explore the optical illusions that are a common feature of Erlich’s work.


We teamed up with psychologists and visual perception experts to come up with a range of demos, magic tricks, and experiments that explore how our brains perceive the world around us – and how easily our senses can be tricked…


The installation used a giant angled mirror to make it appear as if people were hanging from the side a terraced house.


Inside our workshop space Aisling McKenna and Haleema Tosodduk from Dorothy Cowie’s lab at Goldsmiths ran an experiment based on the rubber hand illusion, while Rob Teszka demonstrated card and coin tricks as part of his research into the distraction techniques used by magicians.


Hands come in different sizes


Rob Teszka in action

Will Jolly and Howard Williams from Queen Mary’s University showed a range of optical illusions relating to their work on visual perception, and we also made our own bird in a cage illusions.


Psychologist Will Jolly tries to fool the kids…


Making ‘bird in a cage’ illusions


See more on our Flickr site.