Harriet Casdin-Silver

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Harriet Casdin-Silver is a pioneer of art holography in the United States and was an important figure in the development of installation art and technological art in the 1960s. Casdin-Silver’s work is internationally recognized and has been exhibited for over 25 years in museums, galleries, and universities through the Americas, Europe, and Asia.

She has not only set aesthetic standards for holography but also stretched the scientific boundaries of the medium. Casdin-Silver was the first artist to develop frontal-projection holograms, the first to explore white light transmission multi-colored holograms, and the first to exhibit outdoor, solar-tracked holograms.

Casdin-Silver began her artistic career in the 1960s as a painter and quickly moved into multi-media and technological images. In 1968, she made her first holograms, becoming one of the first artists to work in this media. Casdin-Silver’s early work focused on both abstract and object-based images; by the late 1970s, Casdin-Silver began exploring the human figure, in particular the female body. At the same time, the artist began to combine holography with other media to create installation pieces. More recently, Casdin-Silver’s work focuses on the issues of feminism, the human form, the aging process, death, and issues of identity.

-- Nick Capasso, Curator, Harriet Casdin-Silver: The Art of Holography, a retrospective at the DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park

CASDIN-SILVER, American, artist; born Feb 10, 1925, died Mar 10, 2008. Education: University of Vermont, Burlington, Columbia University, New York, New School for Social Research, New York, Cambridge Goddard Graduate School, Cambridge. Career: Artist in residence, American Optical Research Laboratory, Framingham, Mass, 1968-73; Ukranian Institute of Physics, Kiev, 1989; Asst. Professor of Physics (Research), Brown University, Rhode Island, 1974-78; Fellow, Center for Advanced Visual Studies, MIT, 1976-85; Consultant, Rockefeller Foundation Arts Program, 1980-81; Visiting lecturer, Royal College of Art, London, 1992, also University of Ghent, Belgium; Prof., Mass College of Art and Design, Boston, 1999; Presenter, SKY ART Conf., Delphi & Ikaria, Greece, 2002; also independent artist Rockefeller Foundation Awards, 1978-79, 1980-82, Lifetime Achievement Award for Art In Holography (Univ. of Nottingham, UK), 1996, Visible Republic Award for public art, 2001, Shearwater Foundation Award for excellence in Holography, 1987, 2001. Exhibitions: Documenta6, Germany 1977, Vienna Biennale, Austria, 1979, São Paolo Bienal, Brazil, 1985, The Art of Holography (Retrospective), DeCordova Museum, USA, 1998, Celebration of Aging (audio-holographic installation), Boston 2000, Univ. of Rhode Island, 2001, Is Freedom Visible? Massachusetts Statehouse, 2002, Museum of Afro-American History, 2003, We Are Here, South Station Concourse, Boston, 2002. Publications include: My First 10 Years as Artist/Holographer, Leonardo, 1989, Holographic Installations, Sculpting With Light, Sculpture, 1991, "Putting Guts into the Machine", Women's Review of Books, 2004. Address: 99 Pond Ave. #403, Brookline, MA, 02445 (Home); 51 Melcher St., 5th Floor, Boston MA, 02210, USA (Studio).