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Counting the Beat

Major collection: Holography
Named collection: Holography Collection
Object type: hologram
Maker: Benyon, Margaret
Date made: 1981
Materials: white light transmission; glass
Measurements: 12 in x 16 in
Nomenclature: fine art
Classification: holograms

The hologram is a pair with Tiresias, originally intended as a two-plate display. A hologrammetric double portrait of a woman and a man (artist and scientist, Benyon and Webster). The horizontal fringes on the head of the man indicate that he is nodding "yes", and the vertical lines on the woman that she is shaking her heading "no". An interferometry of the emotions, rather than the non-destructive testing for which the technique is more commonly used.

The title derives from a poem by Robert Graves. The movement that took place between two pulsed laser exposures, twenty billionths of a second apart, are directly visible on the skin as light and dark patterns. Contours of both outer and inner body movements can be seen, such as the beating of the heart, the traditional seat of the emotions. Master made at CEGB in collaboration with John Webster; transfer made in MoH Gabor lab during an AIR. Photo: M. Benyon © Please note that due to the unique challenges of holography as a medium, high-resolution digital images are not available for most items in the holography collection. Please contact us for more information on reproducing images of holograms.

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