Suzanne Treister

The Holographic Universe Theory Of Art History (THUTOAH)
Single-channel video (16:54 mins) with sound (51:16 mins)

read audio transcript

The Holographic Universe Theory of Art History (THUTOAH), investigates the holographic principle and the theory that our universe could be understood as a vast and complex hologram, and hypothesises that, beyond acknowledged art historical contexts and imperatives, artists may have also been unconsciously attempting to describe the holographic nature of the universe.

Projecting over 25,000 chronological images from art history (from cave painting to global contemporary art, including outsider and psychedelic art), THUTOAH echoes conceptually the actions of CERN's particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), accelerating at 25 images per second in a looped sequence. Alongside this colossal library of images is a soundtrack of interviews with, and watercolours by, the scientists at CERN - illustrations and articulations of the holographic principle.

THUTOAH hypothesises a reality that has perhaps been intuited over the ages, a reality beyond the already documented intentional depictions of spiritual, mystical or transcendent realities or altered states of consciousness; the reality of the holographic nature of the universe.

The ideas behind this work manifested in several diagrams in the project, HFT The Gardener (2014-15) and watercolours in the project, SURVIVOR (F) (2016-ongoing). Eight works on paper from these projects form part of the installation.

Installation at CCCB (Centro de Cultural Contemporania de Barcelona), Barcelona, Spain 2019

Video installation at FACT, Liverpool, England 2018

Video installation at FACT, Liverpool, England 2018

13 watercolours by CERN Theoretical Physicists, describing the holographic principle (each 21 x 29.7cm)
Installation at FACT, Liverpool, England 2018

Video installation at FACT, Liverpool, England 2018


g gg
g g
g g
g g
g g

THUTOAH - video still composite/op art

THUTOAH - video still composite/socialist realism

THUTOAH - video still composite/cave art

Winner of Collide International award Suzanne Treister at CERN
Photo: Claudia Marcelloni, May 3rd 2018

Tour exhibitions, venues and dates:

Broken Symmetries, FACT, Liverpool, England
(23 Nov 2018 - 3 March 2019)

QUANTICA, CCCB, Barcelona, Spain
(9th April - 24th September 2019)

, iMAL, Brussels, Belgium
(5 March - 16 Aug 2020)

QUANTICA, National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Taiwan
(14 March - 31 May 2020)

QUANTICA, KUMU, Tallinn, Estonia October
(29 Oct 2020 - 21 February 2021)

QUANTICA, Le Lieue Unique, Nantes, France

To the Edge of Time, KU University Library galleries, Leuven, Belgium
(October 22 2021 – January 16 2022)

THUTOAH was developed as part of the Collide International Award, a partnership programme between Arts at CERN and FACT. It was co-produced by ScANNER (Science-Art Network for New Exhibitions and Research), composed of FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology, Liverpool); Arts at CERN, Geneva; CCCB (Centro de Cultural Contemporania de Barcelona); iMAL (interactive Media Art Laboratory, Brussels); and LLU (Le Lieu Unique, Nantes)

Treister homepage