Renowned hologram artist and COFA academic Paula Dawson's work is featured in an exhibition at the Newcastle Regional Art Gallery.

There are 24 holograms on display for Virtual Encounters: Paula Dawson holograms, including ANN (pictured), a portrait of Ann Lewis, AO arts patron and collector, who was formally a director of Gallery A and currently vice president of the international council of the Museum of Modern Art NY.

The exhibition explores how Dr Dawson simulates and evokes complex temporal states of being though digital and analogue holographic imagery. The earliest work in the exhibition, There's No Place Like Home, from the collection of the National Gallery in Canberra depicts a lounge room, which is built into a real house structure. The exhibition also showcases Luminous Presence and Shadowy Figures, computer graphic holograms which are outcomes of ARC Discovery Projects for which Dawson was chief investigator.

From a 2008 UNSW Goldstar award there is Fig.3 Phantombrush, a hand drawn bunch of grapes which project out into the viewer's space, made using the software developed specifically for the haptic hardware interface the Phantom.

"This is really special," says Dr Dawson of the exhibition, which covers much of her 30-year career. "It takes courage from the gallery to put on a show like this because there are lots of lasers to align correctly and it's expensive, with so many safety requirements."

The exhibition was curated in partnership with Macquarie University Art Gallery.

Dr Dawson's next project, an ARC Linkage with a number of collaborators, will be the creation of a series of analogue holograms of deep images of water. A unique holographic camera will be constructed to capture very short exposures of moving planes of water. These will be exhibited in the Trench, a back of house space at Federation Square in Melbourne.

"Destination is a virtual place, creating an immersive environment," says Dr Dawson. "It will give you a different way of looking at water."

Media contact: Susi Hamilton, UNSW media | 9385 1583 |