Welcome to the MIRAGE Lab

The home of multisensory body illusions

Welcome to the MIRAGE lab. We are a group of researchers who like to have fun with body-changing illusions. Our aim is to understand how the brain knows what the body is like, how your body feels to you and how that underpins your sense of self, health and wellbeing.

finger stretch

Our finger stretching illusion

How your body feels to you is a result of how your brain puts together what you can see, feel and touch, as well as information about where your body parts are and how you move.

When this goes wrong it is called having a disturbed body representation. Disturbed body representations can be found in a range of psychiatric, clinical and chronic pain disorders. Our research is designed to work out how the healthy brain uses sensory information to work out your body representation and how that can sometimes go wrong.

MIRAGE finger stretch gif

Finger stretching GIF

To do this we use a multisensory illusion box called MIRAGE which was invented by a psychologist at the University of Nottingham in 2008. This device allows us to change the sensory information that your brain gets about the size, shape and movement of your body. This means that we can create lots of body illusions like the feeling that you have stretched fingers, extra hands or even missing hands. Take a look at the Illusions page for more videos.

Have a look through our site to see how we do this and decide if you want to know more or get involved.