Our venues

Blog

The ghost of Stewart Bale

30 May 2008 by Sam

Anne Gleave, our curator of photographic archives, has had an interesting phonecall from a sharp-eyed lady, who discovered a mysterious presence in the Stewart Bale photograph of the Anglican Cathedral under construction from the current Metropolis exhibition.

In the middle of the photograph there is a figure walking along the street, but only their legs are visible. Anne says this is probably the result of somebody walking past during a long exposure photograph.

Update 23/06/2008: After further examination of the image Anne has this update: “It could be that the figure was standing approximately in one place with the top half moving more than the lower half and a slightly long exposure only captured the lower half as the legs were more still. It is also possible that a dye may have been used on the negative to obscure a figure that was not wanted in the photograph; however, examination of the negative does not show any obvious signs of dye use. The detail of the image on the website does indicate a certain change of tone, as if a dye may have been used to remove the top half of the figure but then the question is if a dye was used, why wasn’t it used to remove the feet; it does seem to be a bit of a mystery.”

However there could be a more eerie explanation – after all, the mysterious figure is walking past the graveyard…

See what you think in this picture.

detail of photograph with a pair of legs walking along street

The camera never lies – but sometimes it only captures half the truth!

(Comments are closed for this post.)

About our blog

Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

Subscribe

RSS RSS Feed

Disclaimer

We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.