Samsung Semiconductor Provides Display Technology to the San Jose Museum of Art

Release date 
Thursday, March 12, 2015

Samsung Semiconductor’s generosity will allow SJMA to add video walls with celestial animations to the exhibition Beta Space: Diana Thater, March 13-September 13.

SAN JOSE, California (March 11, 2015)—Thanks to a generous donation of the use of display technology by Samsung Semiconductor, Inc., the San Jose Museum of Art will add two new works by internationally acclaimed artist Diana Thater to the exhibition Beta Space: Diana Thater, which opens at SJMA March 13, 2015. Samsung Semiconductor, which is building a 1.1 million-square-foot research and development (R&D) headquarters north of downtown San Jose to open in July, made the in-kind loan of 18 UE-D Series 46-inch LED displays to the Museum this week. SJMA will use these displays to create two video walls for the artist’s digital animations of the Milky Way and the greater galactic neighborhood. These works will accompany Thater’s dramatic video and light installation Science, Fiction, 2015, in which she explores the connection between the dung beetle and the Milky Way.

“We have long hoped to be able to include Diana Thater’s remarkable video-wall works in this exhibition, but until now lacked the necessary equipment and technical capacity,” said Susan Krane, Oshman Executive Director at the San Jose Museum of Art. “At the eleventh hour, Samsung Semiconductor stepped forward to make it possible for our visitors to experience these extraordinary depictions of the galaxy, which are both beautiful and important from the scientific context of Science, Fiction, the central installation. We are immensely grateful for Samsung’s generous in-kind donation, without which this part of the exhibition would not have happened.”

“We are honored to have the opportunity for Diana Thater to utilize our video wall displays for her creative exhibit,” said Scott Birnbaum, Executive Sponsor Corporate Citizenship. “When every detail matters, our cutting-edge displays will enhance viewer experience, projecting spectacular crisp images of her digital animations.” 

“The artists of our time use new tools to engage and delight us. The City of San José is honored to have Samsung Semiconductor as a leading corporate citizen and contributor to the artistic and creative scene in our community,” said Kim Walesh, Kim Walesh, Director of Economic Development and Deputy City Manager, City of San José. 

Thater’s installation is inspired by the dung beetle, the only member of the animal kingdom known to use the luminous band of the Milky Way for orientation. In her installation Science, Fiction, larger-than-life moving images of the jewellike insect will float across the ceiling in a gallery enveloped in blue light. On the Samsung video walls will be two works: Visual Voyage: Milky Way to the Virgo Cluster, 2015, and Aquarius Halos, 2015. Thater received her digital animations of the Milky Way and greater galactic neighborhood from leading astronomers and astrophysicists from throughout the world. She sought advice from Puragra GuhaThakurta, an international expert on galaxy formation and evolution at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and UCO/Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton near San Jose, who recommended a careful selection of visualizations based upon astronomical observational data. Thater synchronized on two video arrays—each comprised of nine screens—these scientific visualizations of deep space and galactic time.

“In these works, Thater encourages viewers to ponder the vastness of the universe and to alter their perception of time,” said Rory Padeken, assistant curator at SJMA. “As Thater showcases the technological achievements of 21st-century astronomyand introduces audiences to abstract concepts of time and space, she also aesthetically conveys the sublime aspects of the cosmic imagination.”

The Samsung UE46D features an ultra-thin 1.2-inch chassis with a slim, 11mm bezel to bezel spec, combined with an upgraded Samsung SMART Signage Platform. This display is designed for video walls in full HD and requires no PC, DVD, or SBB. It has built in Wifi, which allows for mobile control and the ability to create the 3 x 3 matrix design needed to display Thater’s animations.

Beta Space: Diana Thater will be on view at the San Jose Museum of Art from March 13 through September 13, 2015. The exhibition is sponsored by Bank of America, Applied Materials Foundation, the Myra Reinhard Family Foundation; Melanie and Peter Cross; and Theres and Denis Rohan, with additional in-kind support from David Zwirner, New York/London. Display technology by Samsung Semiconductor. 

Visual Voyage: Milky Way to the Virgo Cluster, 2015 (a 9 minute 35 second loop), includes HDTV visual excerpt from “Runaway Universe,” 2000, courtesy NOVA/WGHB and PBS, Tom Lucas Productions. This visualization is based upon astronomical observational data from the following catalogs: Brent Tully Galaxy Catalog, Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii at Manoa; Hipparcos Star Catalog, European Space Agency, Paris; David Mallin Images, Anglo-Australian Telescope, Siding Spring Observatory, Australia; Frei/Gunn Galaxy Catalog, Princeton University, New Jersey.

Aquarius Halos, 2015, (a 9 minute 25 second loop), includes footage courtesy of Dr. Volker Springer, Max-Planck-Institute for Astrophysics, Garching, Germany. This visualization is based upon The Aquarius Project, a large-scale collaborative program of the Virgo Consortium, a group of leading international scientists who carry out state-ofthe-art cosmological simulations on supercomputers.


Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. inspires the world and shapes the future with transformative ideas and technologies, redefining the worlds of TVs, smartphones, wearable devices, tablets, cameras, digital appliances, printers, medical equipment, network systems and semiconductors.

We are also leading in the Internet of Things space through, among others, our Digital Health and Smart Home initiatives. We employ 307,000 people across 84 countries. To discover more, please visit our official website at and our official blog at


The San Jose Museum of Art celebrates new ideas, stimulates creativity, and inspires connection with every visit. Welcoming and thought-provoking, the Museum rejects stuffiness and delights visitors with its surprising and playful perspective on the art and artists of our time.

The San Jose Museum of Art is located at 110 South Market Street in downtown San Jose, California. The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 PM to 5 PM and until 8 PM or later on the third Thursday of each month. Admission is $8 for adults, $5 for students and senior citizens, and free to members and children under 6. For more information, call 408-271-6840 or visit

# # #

Programs at the San Jose Museum of Art are made possible by generous operating support from the David and Lucille Packard Foundation, Yvonne and Mike Nevens, a Cultural Affairs grant from the City of San Jose, and the Richard A. Karp Charitable Foundation.