Leonardo’s Executive Editor Roger Malina presented a keynote speech at the Leonardo’s 50th Birthday celebration at ISDH2018. (Leonardo is a journal published six times a year by The MIT Press.) During his presentation Malina stated that Holography is still an ’emergent art form’, with more research in the field welcomed by the international art/science/technology community. In comparison with for example Computer Art which is now seen as established.

International Symposium on Display Holography 2018
Image Credit: Marek Sutkowski, 2018

In this video Prof Martin Richardson and Prof Sean F. Johnston are capturing transmission holograms from the DMU archive for book Holograms: A Cultural History .

“Engineers, artists, hippies and hobbyists have played with, and dreamed about, holograms. This book explores how holograms found a place in distinct cultural settings. It is aimed at readers attracted to pop culture, visual studies and cultural history, scholars concerned with media history, fine art and material studies and, most of all, cross-disciplinary audiences intrigued about how this ubiquitous but still-mysterious visual medium grew up in our midst and became entangled in our culture. “ Sean F. Johnston

A short film by Tove Dalenius

But what is a hologram?

Educational Video Library

What is not a hologram? There are many technologies that are described as “holograms” in the media and promotions but in fact are not. The whale jumping out of the floor, Tupac and most videos you see that claim to show you a hologram are actually showing a Pepper’s ghost illusion. These can be beautiful and fun too. But they are not holograms. The image in the header of this page is of a Lightfield Displays from Looking Glass Factory. It is not a hologram.
Read more here: When is a hologram not a hologram?

An early inspiration for Tove’s work was the seminal tabletop (viewable from above) hologram ‘Seattle’ (2010) exposed by Zebra Imaging. The mini-city rising into the air like light sculpture triggered many years of research.

Zebra Imaging’s Seattle hologram

Tove developed ideas around data visualisation using the full-parallax technology developed at Zebra Imaging. However, in terms of the production of completed full-parallax holograms, this research has been on hold since Zebra closed its operations in 2017, waiting for another lab to come online. Tove has been working on a number of ideas to bring to the world when new a new facility opens. This technology is so cutting edge that it is not actually available at all globally after Zebras demise. However, this is now changing…

Hologram by T. Dalenius. Solar irradiation data modelled by Dr Simon Rees.

For ideas about what artists have made using different types of holography in the past, please visit Jonathan Ross’s Gallery 286 and collection.

A Rudie Berkhout hologram from Jonathan Ross’s art collection.