Mike Gould is a Michigan-based laser artist. He was born and has spent most of his life in Ann Arbor, and he currently lives north of Jackson. Gould graduated from Kalamazoo College and has been active in the laser display community since 2009. He has received four International Laser Display Association awards for his work in lumia lasers, projected laser art, and video. As principal designer/builder/artist for his troupe, Illuminatus Lasers, Gould has assembled, inspired, and motivated an experienced crew with talent in electrical and mechanical engineering, cartooning, machining, software, lawyering, business, and optics. His most recent work was Lasing Nang Talung, an interactive outdoor laser piece that ran for two months in 2018 in Madison, Wisconsin. He contributed laser special effects to the horror film Hereditary (2018) and for the World Steam Expo, a steampunk event in Dearborn, Michigan.
Soleri, So Laser is a display of interactive, water-like, neo-Op art—projected on the 64-foot pylons of Soleri Bridge through a form of kinetic laser light called “lumia.” Instead of the conventional lasers seen at events like rock concerts, lumia lasers are directed through carefully prepared, diffractive media. The resulting display is a slowly moving and evolving exhibition of serene, wispy patterns of incredible color. An Op art moiré effect is produced by the interference patterns inherent in diffracted, coherent laser light. The lumia is carefully engineered to evoke the sense of light on water: ripples, bubbles, and a general flow reflect the aqueous surroundings of Soleri Bridge. Gould’s projectors—or “engines of light”—use a wide variety of technology. Viewers of Soleri, So Laser can direct the projections, varying the speed and brightness of the laser displays from control panels built into vintage lunchboxes with knobs made from crystal jewels.