Pictures from the Moon: Artists' Holograms 1969 - 2008Exhibition
Life, in 3D.
Its easy to overlook the wonder of computer algorithms when they're responsible for recommending underwear to you, or to forget the centuries of mathematic theory that led up to it. Which is why we have museums. As reminders go, Pictures from the Moon is quite shrewd. The original Museum of Holography was a stone's throw away on Mercer Street, long before SoHo was a real estate developer's dream. It was tiny, dark and anti-climactic, full of wiggle pictures you could peer around. Pictures bears a very strong resemblance to it. But hold on. It's true, the technology in this iteration might seem antiquarian. What is not is our awareness of the shifting planes of possibility when it comes to images, now that your phone can offer you underwear. This show is less about technology than it is about us, and some heavy hitters seem to agree. Chuck Close uses hologrpahy to spell out the meaning of eyebrow hair, and Louise Bourgeois makes the terrors of domesticity visceral. But most interesting of all is the earliest piece on display, Bruce Nauman's Hologram H. In it, the artist is compacted into fetal foreshortening. This simple image reminds us that technology ultimately belongs to us, and there is something rudimentary about it.
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