Senior Lecturer in Photography
Through the still and moving image, my photography is engaged with enabling meaningful encounters with place and community. Alongside teaching, I am currently writing up my practice-based PhD, 'Close Encounters: Developing photographic outcomes in collaboration with a science communication organisation in Northumberland International Dark Sky Park' (University of Sunderland), which aims to find what beneficial outcomes emerge when a creative practitioner and dark sky visitor attraction work in partnership. Undertaken with Kielder Observatory, a visitor attraction and science outreach charity in Northumberland International Dark Sky Park, this project has been funded by the National Productivity Investment Fund (AHRC).
Teaching and supervision
I teach on BA (Hons) Photography, Video and Digital Imaging.
Research interests for potential research students
- Photography and industry partnerships
- Photography and tourism
- Photography and dialogue
- Photography and science
PhD title: Close Encounters: Developing photographic outcomes in collaboration with a science communication organisation in Northumberland International Dark Sky Park. (Submission: 2024).
Funded by the National Productivity Investment Fund (AHRC), this practice-based PhD seeks to find new photographic encounters with dark skies through creative reflective practice, explored in partnership with Kielder Observatory, a visitor attraction and science outreach charity located in Northumberland International Dark Sky Park. This research reflects on the cultural connectedness of astronomy and photography and creates new, imaginative image-led experiences of dark skies.
Creative outputs include a series of constructed portraits, still life and landscape images, a 'sonified image' installation and Another Dimension, a virtual exhibition embedded on Kielder Observatory's website. The process of disseminating the work – in Observe, Experiment, Archive (Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens, 2019) and through an outdoor photographic display (Kielder Forest, 2022) – encourages audiences to engage in a civic encounter with photography. Through a novel model that engages IDSP stakeholders and audiences through creative means, this work offers mutual benefits to the fields of both dark sky tourism and photographic practice.
- Arts and industry partnerships
- Photography and darkness
- Photography and astronomy
- Constructed photography
- Photography and dialogue
Personal website helenmcghie.com
'Observe, Experiment, Archive', Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens (Sunderland 2019-20), 'Writing Skyscapes', Nottingham Contemporary & Backlit Gallery (Nottingham 2029 & 2020), '209 Women', Portcullis House (London, 2018), 'Field/s ONE', Sluice_HQ (London, 2018), ‘<The Scrap>', Culture Station Seoul 284 (Seoul, 2018), 'And Again/Sluice_', Brooklyn Fire Proof (New York, 2016), 'Hello Future! Talent’s Archive', Onassis Cultural Centre (Athens, 2015).
ACE Emergency Grant, Arts Council England (2020), Winner, Format Festival: International Portfolio Reviewers’ Choice Award (2018), Winner, British Women Artists Competition (2016), Nominated, Magnum Graduate Award (2015, 2017).
Park, H. (ed.) (2020) 'Sequence', Monthly Photography [journal, South Korea], (July).
Rideal, L. and Soriano, K. (2018) Madam and Eve: Women Portraying Women. London: Laurence King Publishing.
Dabner, D. et al. (2017) Graphic Design School, London: Thames & Hudson.
Luxemburg, R. B. (2014) Science & Fiction, London: Black Dog Publishing.
McGhie, H. (2020) 'Stargazing at the "Invisible": A Research Partnership with Kielder Observatory', Open Dome Special: Exploring Skyscapes. Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham , 28 February.
McGhie, H. (2019) 'Art and Astronomy', Space Rocks! Art and Astronomy Day. Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens, Sunderland, 23 November.
McGhie, H. (2020) 'Stargazing at the "Invisible": A Research Partnership with Kielder Observatory', Writing Skyscapes, (Nottingham Trent University). Backlit Gallery, Nottingham, 31 March.
McGhie, H. (2019) 'Stargazing at the "Invisible": A Research Partnership with Kielder Observatory', Living Research: The Urgency of the Arts. Royal College of Art, London, 15 March.
McGhie, H. (2018) 'Valuing Communities of Practice', NEPN Develop Graduate. University of Sunderland, Sunderland, 29 June.