Stalking the Belle Époque: 11/25/12 - 12/2/12 A Claude Glass is ostensibly a small, blackened mirror which is contained in a box. The device acts as a portable drawing and painting tool which was popular in the late Eighteenth Century with the amateur artists who embarked on international “sketching tours.” The device was especially meant for us in rendering landscapes by reflecting a landscape so that it could be copied by the artist.
Claude glass: late 18th century mirror carried by tourists. "The device was typically pocket-size, with convex, gray-colored glass. When viewers looked into it, the convex shape pushed more scenery into a single focal point and the color of the glass changed the tones to be more pleasing to the eye by the standards of the contemporary picturesque paintings, which had a limited color palette. The constructed image was thought to be even more beautiful than reality."
Notes from the lecture ‘Anti-Entropy: A natural History of the Studio’ by William Kentridge at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), Melbourne
"A Claude glass (or black mirror) is a small mirror, slightly convex in shape, with its surface tinted a dark colour. Black Mirrors have the effect of abstracting the subject reflected in it from its surroundings, reducing and simplifying the colour and tonal range of scenes and scenery to give them a painterly quality)." From Wikipedia. "The person using it ought always to turn his back to the object that he views," Thomas West