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Holograms are recorded by laser‐assisted oxidation of thin tellurium films in air. The process of recording is characterized in situ by measuring the evolution of a self‐diffracted beam of a cw Ar+ laser. Stationary diffraction efficiency is shown to be independent both on the recording beam power and on the grating period. Amplitude holograms are obtained with an efficiency of 3.2% at a spatial period of 3 μm.