A newunsymmetrical photochromic diarylethene 1-(2-cyanophenyl)-2-[2-methy-5-(3-fluorophenyl)-3-thienyl]perfluorocyclopentene (1a) has been synthesized. Its photochromic properties in solution and PMMA film were investigated. Diarylethene 1a changed the color from colorless to purple upon irradiation with 297 nm UV light, in which absorption maxima were observed at 540 nm in hexane and at 545 nm in PMMA film, respectively. This new photochromic system also exhibited remarkable fluorescence switching in the solid state. The results demonstrated that it can be potentially used as polarization holographic optical recording medium.