Closing Notes

The topics covered are just a few of the possible options for display types and techniques of working with light. Once you find a research paper on one, there are a million other paths in the references of that paper. I hope this gave you a good idea of the range of amazing technologies out there — from the DIY $5 option to the theoretical and fanciful. There are other effects we didn’t explore in detail like stereoscopic displays for home 3D movie viewing, lenticular effects and many more. There are also a lot of technologies that never took off, either for reasons of cost, complexity, or ownership. Things like CamFPD’s wedge display, or Electrowetting displays (similar to e-ink) were ones that had great commercial potential only 10 years ago, but never ended up taking off for one reason or the other. Some techniques are quite old and were never acquired as intellectual property and will eventually be available in the public domain. There are whole conventions devoted to advancements in display technology, but much of it never reaches the general public or the artistic community. Lots of great options, ripe for use or modification. The more we experiment and use these technologies, the sooner we’ll get to advance the ones on the fringe. If interest in these alternative displays increases, they will become more normalized and costs will come down, opening the door for even more experimentation.
We’ll be seeing a lot more display developments in the next few decades, so keep your eyes open and see which ones might be a good fit for your artistic vision.
Image: Adam Diston — Cutting a Sunbeam 1886