Gustav Kuhn completed his PhD at Sussex University in 2003, where he investigated implicit learning of musical structures. Prior to his academic career, Gustav had worked as a professional magician. Towards the end of his PhD he started to explore the ways in which magicians can misdirect people’s attention. He discovered the potential of using magic as a method for investigating a wide variety of cognitive processes.
Over the centuries, magicians have learned how to perform acts that are perceived as defying the laws of nature, and that induce a strong sense of wonder. Many of the techniques used to create these illusions share similarities with topics investigated by psychologists.
In a simple experiment, he shows us the difference between what we actually see and what we think we've seen during a simple magic trick. This disparity allows magicians to create illusions which both fool and entertain us.