The Unseen

An Atlas of Infrared Plates

Edward Thompson


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Image: Edward Thompson/Schilt Publishing

The Village. Pluckley, Kent. U.K. 2011. The Village is one part of a project made up of three experimental photo-series using the last rolls of infrared colour film on the planet.  As well as using the film for what it was originally designed for the project also aims to find other alternative uses for the film and subverting its original intended purposes.  The first series of the project focuses on using infrared films ability to photograph on the higher end of the visual spectrum in an attempt to photograph ghosts in the most haunted village in England. 
The village of Pluckley is nearly a thousand years old; the first written record of it is in the Domesday Book (1086). The Guinness Book of World Records (1989) named Pluckley the most haunted village in England and according to legend there are a number of ghosts that haunt the village and surrounding area.

Image: Edward Thompson

Inspired by the scientific uses of infrared film throughout history, 'The Unseen - An Atlas of Infrared Plates' pushes the purposes and properties of the rarest photographic film on the planet to its scientific and conceptual limit.

In The Unseen – An Atlas of Infrared Plates British documentary photographer Edward Thompson set out to explore the boundaries of our perception.

Inspired by the various uses of infrared film throughout history he has gathered an extensive archive of work using some of the last dead-stock rolls of Kodak Aerochrome Infrared film ever made.
Colour infrared film had over 1,800 documented uses, in this book a dozen of them have been expanded upon, pushing the purposes and properties of the film to its scientific and conceptual limit.

From aerial photographs of London to still life photography of vital organs, landscape photography and nude portraiture, the book covers a vast range of photographic tropes. The projects have come together within the book to create a wider narrative that questions the nature of our reality, our past and what could be our future.

The Unseen is a swan song to the medium of colour infrared film photography, of which this book has also become an artefact, a part of its history.

Edward Thompson/Schilt Publishing

  • Maker(s):
  • Edward Thompson


Image: Edward Thompson



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