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Massachusetts Institute of Technology  /  MIT Museum
Building N51   265 Massachusetts Avenue   Cambridge, MA 02139
Open Daily 10am – 5pm  /  Closed Major Holidays

If the MIT Museum is closed due to snow, there will be a message here.

Luminous Windows 2011

December 10, 2010 - April 1, 2011
Sunset - 2 a.m.
Opening Reception and Activities

The MIT Museum’s 3rd annual Luminous Windows winter exhibition of holography features technical achievements by companies and individuals working in this revolutionary imaging technology since 1984. Every evening for several months the following holograms are on view to the public in the windows of the MIT Museum, facing Massachusetts Avenue.

The holograms on view represent historical breakthroughs and state-of-the-art techniques. In addition to developments in computer-generated holography and digital holographic printing, the exhibition also highlights innovations in analog holography, including large-scale and high-resolution images with dramatic depth and clarity.

T-Rex Skull by John Perry (1988)
Lunar Lander by Michael Teitel and MIT Spatial Imaging Group (1984)
AVATAR, by RabbitHoles Media (2010)
Aerial 3D Survey of MIT Campus by Zebra Imaging (2010)
Jean-Marc Sor Butterflies (No. 1), Yves Gentet (2008)
Psychedelic Amy by Martin Richardson and Geola Digital (2008)

T-Rex Scull


T-Rex Skull

The T-Rex Skull was produced by John Perry for the St. Louis Zoo in 1988. This analog, white light transmission hologram creates an experience of visual depth and fidelity that differs radically from the images developed by digital methods.

Lunar Lander


Lunar Lander

Through a collaboration between the MIT Spatial Imaging Group and the Architecture Machine Group in 1984, the Lunar Lander was the first computed stereogram made at MIT from 35mm movie film—100 images were captured from an animated 3D computer graphic scene. Subsequently, these two research groups were among the founders of the MIT Media Lab.

Avatar (woman in woods)



This limited edition AVATAR hologram, produced by Acme Archives and RabbitHoles Media in 2010, was originally commissioned by RealD as a 3D innovation award to honor director James Cameron and producer Jon Landau of Lightstorm Entertainment. RabbitHoles® holograms contain a digital image sequence of up to 1,280 frames embedded on silver halide film using patented pulsed laser printers.

MIT Campus


Aerial 3D Survey of MIT Campus

The Aerial 3D Survey of MIT Campus was created in 2010 by Zebra Imaging and features the main buildings joined by the "infinite corridor" of MIT. Zebra Imaging's unique point-cloud rendering technology creates a graphical representation of aerial LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) data and encodes it in holographic pixels, or hogels, to create a virtual 3D picture of the surveyed area.

butterflies - painting on red background


Jean-Marc Sor Butterflies (No. 1)

Scientist, inventor, and artist Yves Gentet developed a new family of silver halide holographic emulsions that produce images regarded by many as the clearest and brightest ever developed in true-color holography. Jean-Marc Sor Butterflies (No. 1) created in 2008, illustrates his emulsion’s efficacy with ideal subject matter: metallic and saturated colors are captured and they change with the angle of view, as in real life.



Psychedelic Amy

Martin Richardson describes Psychedelic Amy as a continuation of the Theatre of Spectacle, conjuring tricks and phantasmagoria made digital. Psychedelic Amy was produced in 2008 in Lithuania by Geola Digital, a company known for innovations that allow holograms to be made from images of people in real-life situations, including cellphone video images.


MIT MUSEUM   265 Massachusetts Avenue   Building N51   Cambridge, MA 02139
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Copyright © 2008-2014 Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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Seth Riskin

Seth Riskin, manager of the MIT Museum’s Emerging Technologies and Holography/Spatial Imaging Initiative explains some concepts about holography:

“Holography is the most advanced means of imaging we have. It’s “real” virtual reality—true 3-D without the material—and it represents how the human brain and light information interact to create the experience of three-dimensional space.

Holography is like photography in that light information is recorded in photosensitive film. In other ways, however, a hologram is significantly different. A hologram is a recording of the light wavefront interference pattern reflected by an object. This record then functions as an optic: when light is projected through the hologram, the light wavefront interference pattern of the original object is reconstructed and this, the brain interprets as 3-D.