As part of his work on human and animal locomotion, physiologist Etienne-Jules Marey used photography instead of graphic methods to illustrate stages of movement. Graphic methods based on chronography had proved of considerable interest despite sometimes inaccurate results. Inspired by the work of Eadweard Muybridge and Jules Janssen, Marey invented the photographic gun to study the flight of birds and bats, reducing exposure times by using silver-bromide gelatine. The gun, equipped with a shutter and a circular magazine containing the photosensitive surfaces, took photographs at the rate of 12 frames a second, recording all the consecutive images on a single plate. Marey then used the pictures to study the locomotion of horses, donkeys, dogs, other animals and humans.


  • Title: Chronophotographic gun
  • Creator: Étienne Jules Marey, Otto Lund
  • Date: 1882
  • Date Created: 1882
  • Location: France
  • Provenance: Musée des arts et métiers
  • Subject Keywords: Image animée / Cinéma / Chronophotographie / Photographie
  • Type: Acier, bois, cuir, ivoire, laiton, verre, fer
  • Contributor: Author: Marie-Sophie Corcy
  • Credits: © Musée des arts et métiers-Cnam/photo Jean Claude Wetzel

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