Travel theme: Smoke and Mirrors II

I had always imagined Smoke and Mirrors to be an expression dating from the early 20th Century alluding to magicians.  However, the figurative use is much more recent and according to, originates from the writings of the American journalist Jimmy Breslin and his 1975 Notes from Impeachment Summer:

“All political power is primarily an illusion… Mirrors and blue smoke, beautiful blue smoke rolling over the surface of highly polished mirrors… If somebody tells you how to look, there can be seen in the smoke great, magnificent shapes, castles and kingdoms, and maybe they can be yours.”

This is the history mirror which only ‘reflects’ events several seconds after they have happened – ingenious time travel achieved by smoke and mirrors:

The history mirror


  1. greenmackenzie · April 2, 2013

    What an amazing photo you created. Very artistic and haunting

    • northumbrianlight · April 2, 2013

      Many thanks – it is another from the Picture House art installation at Belsay from 2007. The little girl timed her entrance perfectly.

  2. Pedro Holderbaum · April 2, 2013


  3. Photography Journal Blog · April 2, 2013

    This is great, I like it a lot.

  4. My Life Afterglow · April 2, 2013

    Whoa! Awesome! 🙂

  5. patrick · April 2, 2013

    Like the picture. As an example of the opposite of ‘smoke and mirrors’, according to OED, the first use of ‘OMG’ is in a letter sent by an Admiral to Winston Churchill in 1917. More telegram than text message…

  6. Hanne T. Fisker · May 3, 2013

    you are good at “haunting” 😉

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