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Helen McGhie


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Senior Lecturer in Photography

Through the still and moving image, my practice explores photographic encounters with the unseen. Alongside teaching, I am currently working on my practice-based PhD, 'Stargazing at the "Invisible": Photography and the Power of Obscured Light - A Research Partnership with Kielder Observatory' (University of Sunderland), which aims to find new photographic encounters with dark skies in Northern England. The project is in partnership with Kielder Observatory (Northumberland) and is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (National Productivity Investment Fund) through Northern Bridge Consortium.



Teaching and supervision

Research

PhD title: 'Stargazing at the "Invisible": Photography and the Power of Obscured Light - A Research Partnership with Kielder Observatory' (Submission: 2023)

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, in partnership with Kielder Observatory (Northumberland). It explores the cultural connectedness of astronomy and photography to re-frame the imaginative experience of dark skies through constructed portraits, still life and landscape images, and the moving image. These creative outputs have been disseminated in art gallery, museum and outdoor public contexts.
  • Photography, darkness and the unseen
  • Photography and astronomy
  • Constructed photography

Personal website: www.helenmcghie.com

Research blog: www.invisiblestargazing.blog 

Selected exhibitions:
'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). 

Selected awards:
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).


Selected publications: 
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.

Conference papers: 
McGhie, H. (2020) 'Stargazing at the "Invisible": A Research Partnership with Kielder Observatory', Open Dome Special: Exploring SkyscapesNottingham 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.

Last updated 31 May 2022