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Paper peepshow - Teleorama No. 1

Teleorama No. 1

  • Object:

    Paper peepshow

  • Place of origin:

    Vienna (published)

  • Date:

    ca.1824-1825 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Müller, Heinrich Friedrich

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Accepted under the Cultural Gifts Scheme by HM Government from the collections of Jacqueline and Jonathan Gestetner and allocated to the Victoria and Albert Museum, 2016.

  • Museum number:

    Gestetner 1

  • Gallery location:

    National Art Library

This accordion-style paper peepshow depicting a bucolic scene of a country house and grounds was the first recorded paper peepshow published by Heinrich Friedrich Müller.

Paper peepshows or teleoramas were first published in the 1820s by a German book and art seller called Heinrich Friedrich Műller. His concept owes much to 18th– century optical curios, such as the cosmoramas which were built into gallery walls or the cumbersome boîtes d’optique, which were large, wooden boxes with multiple scenes. In contrast to their predecessors, Műller’s teleoramas were small and primarily constructed from paper and cloth. They consisted of staggered paper panels which were connected at the sides by flexible material bellows. The front and back boards of the peepshow pulled apart, to reveal a concertina structure and the diminishing paper panels created an effect of receding perspective, which lead the viewer’s gaze towards the back scene.

Physical description

Accordion-style paper peepshow of a country house and grounds.
6 cut-out panels. Hand-coloured etchings. In a slipcase. Expands to approximately 66 cm.

Panel 1: a shepherd, shepherdess, sheep and a dog.
Panel 2: a cow feeding her calf.
Panel 3: woman with boy and donkey, boy asleep on the side of the road.
Panel 4: woman talking to a gardener over a wall.
Panel 5: gentry strolling in a garden with formal hedges and statues.
Panel 6: people strolling around a fountain.
Back panel: large country house with stream and bridge, two ladies in a rowing boat.

Place of Origin

Vienna (published)


ca.1824-1825 (published)


Müller, Heinrich Friedrich

Materials and Techniques



Height: 12 cm front panel, Width: 15 cm front panel, Depth: 66 cm whole peepshow extended

Object history note

This is the first recorded published paper peepshow, advertised in 'Amts-und Intelligenzblatt von Salzburg' on 24 October 1825 according to R. Hyde, Paper Peepshows, p. 10 (see Bibliography).
Part of the Jacqueline and Jonathan Gestetner Collection, collected over 30 years and given to the V&A Museum through the government's Cultural Gift Scheme in 2016.

Descriptive line

Teleorama No. 1

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

R. Hyde, Paper Peepshows. The Jacqueline and Jonathan Gestetner Collection (Woodbridge: The Antique Collectors' Club, 2015), cat. 1.






Ephemera; National Art Library; Optical toys; Paper Peepshow

Production Type

Mass produced


National Art Library

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