Discover Another Dimension – an immersive virtual art exhibition by Helen McGhie, our photographic artist-researcher in residence. This is a virtual tour of Kielder Observatory that invites you to creatively contemplate the cosmos through photography, film and sound. The exhibition explores human encounters with dark skies in Northern England and shares personal memories of observations, celestial dreams, and the inspiration felt by astronomers to gaze up at the universe.
The exhibition is best viewed in full screen (click here to do this) on a desktop browser, but it can also be experienced on a smartphone. A short video with ‘how to explore’ instructions will open when you enter the exhibition. Please note, there is a ‘full screen’ button at the bottom right of the window. The background sound may be blocked by some browsers — you can toggle it on by clicking the musical note symbol at the bottom left of the window.
Another Dimension is part of Helen’s arts-based research project ‘Stargazing at the Invisible: Photography and the Power of Obscured Light.’ She is a PhD student at the University of Sunderland and is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (Northern Bridge Consortium). Her project seeks to discover new lens-based encounters with dark skies in Northern England, in partnership with Kielder Observatory.
Another Dimension also included an outdoor photography exhibit along the access track to the observatory in the summer of 2022. Large images were suspended between the spruce trees to become a creative part of the landscape and give visitors the chance to explore the darkness of a winter Kielder night throughout the lighter summer months. Helen lead a special arts event, ‘The Art of Dark Skies’ at Kielder Observatory on 7th February 2022 and a walking tour of the exhibition for the public on 10th September 2022.
For more information about Helen’s research project, see her website and research blog: