Approved: 14.09.2011

Melanie K

Artist, Curator, Event organiser, Lecturer / academic, Maker

Approved: 14.09.2011

Melanie is a Multi-Disciplinary artist and curator with a specific focus on astronomy.

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Melanie is a Multi-Disciplinary artist and curator with a specific focus on astronomy.

She is co-Director of super/colliderLumen Studios and the London Alternative Photography Collective. She is a member of ITACCUS (The Committee for the Cultural Utilisation of Space) in association with the International Astronautical Federation.

Melanie is currently studying towards a PhD at the Royal College of Art. See RCA Research Profile
Melanie's research is concerned with the visual language that is currently associated with astronomy. Melanie seeks to find our how visible and invisible celestial objects and phenomena are represented in the field of art and science. Her research compares how these images are produced, disseminated and interpreted.

The visual language currently used in the field of astronomy, specifically Hubble imagery, relies upon sophisticated composite imaging techniques, which has led to a "false" perception of what we might see through the lens of a telescope. Astronomical institutions often mediate an image before it is viewed by the general public, where colours are added that are informed by processes such as spectroscopy. Following the advent of social media and news images, these highly mediated images have become widely distributed.

Through the production of a series of artworks, Melanie considers how it is possible to ‘come into contact’ with celestial objects using a variety of representational techniques. Alongside scientific institutions, Melanie’s research considers how astronomical images are constructed, and suggests a number of alternatives. 

Melanie works with photography, video and sound/data visualisation techniques.  The artist often seeks opportunities to directly view and capture celestial objects, and benefits from journeys to dark sky areas. Recent projects include photographic etchings made from meteorite fragments, a series of oscillograph installations fed by pulsar and cosmic ray data, daguerreotypes of the planet Mercury and a series of photographic prints caused by the sun, moon and stars. Also in 2017, Melanie has been working with Kielder Observatory and the UCLO Observatory to capture photographic images of stars and planets directly onto photographic film.

CV & Education

Born 1988 in Manchester, now based in London, UK.
Multi-Disciplinary Artist.
Director: London Alternative Photography CollectiveLumen Studiossuper/collider
Occasional Curator, Lecturer, Writer.
Member of ITACCUS


MPhil Fine Art, Royal College of Art, 2015 - 2019.
MA Art and Science, Central Saint Martins, 2011 - 2013.
BA Fine Art, Leeds College of Art, 2008 - 2011.


Green Man Festival (Lumen), 2017
Developed In Birmingham, 2017
Aries On The Horizon (Lumen), British Science Association, 2017
Chelsea Flower Fringe, June 2016
On Light, World Record Cyanotype, The Wellcome Trust, May 2015.

Laboratory of Dark MattersGuest Projects, April 2017
Royal College of Art Merz Barn Residency, February 2017 
Kielder Observatory, February 2017 (Supported by LCC Research)
The Story Of Light, Goa, India, January 2015
Foyle Foundation Residency, Four Corners Film, London, UK, December 2014.
The Old Lookout Gallery, Broadstairs, UK, 2014
MRC Anatomical Neuropharmacology Unit, Oxford University, UK, 2012.



First Light, Leeds Art University - Vernon St, Leeds, UK. 3 Nov - 15 Dec 2017
Ancient Light, Blyth Gallery, Imperial College London, 9 Jan - 2 Feb 2018


Flourish Exhibition for excellence in Printmaking, WYPW, 16 Sep - 28 Oct 2017
Eclipse Commission, Green Man Festival, Brecon Beacons, UK, 17-20 Aug 2017
Laboratory of Dark Matters, Cleveland Mining Museum, 26 July - 2 Sep 2017
No Stone Unturned: Exploring Perceptions of WildnessNunnsyard Gallery, Norwich, UK, 7 - 11 July 2017
Blue Dot Festival, Jodrell Bank, Macclesfield, 7-9 July 2017
Daybreak, Royal College of Art Fine Art Research Exhibition, Maverick Projects, 29 June – 1 July 2017
Beneath The Salt, Stormen, Bodø, Norway, 24 Jun - 30 Aug 2017
Shadow Merchants, Argentea Gallery, Birmingham, UK, 15 Jun - 15 Jul 2017
Making A Photograph, The Photographers' Gallery / LAPC Open Door, 02 - 04 June 2017
Beneath The Salt, Kulturbadet Galleri, Sandnessjøen, Norway, 22 April - 28 May 2017
O, Garden Room Gallery, Dartington, UK, 20 Apr - 8 May 2017
Laboratory of Dark MattersGuest Projects, London, 01-31 Apr 2017
Altered Realities, Central Saint Martins, Lethaby Gallery, London, UK, 22 Feb - 15 Mar 2017
Lumen: School of Light, Ugly Duck, 02-05 Feb 2017
London Creative Network ShowcaseSpace Studios, London, UK, 19-21st Jan 2017.


Lumen: La Fine dell'Universo, The Crypt Gallery, London, UK, 25-26th Nov 2016.
Obsolete & Discontinued, Shaelpic Photokunstbar, Cologne, Germany, 4th - 30 Nov 2016.
Analogue Mania, Timisoara, Romania, 1-6 Nov 2016.
Mozillafest, Ravensbourne University in association with V&A, UK, 28 - 30 Oct 2016
Brighton Photo Fringe: BPF Open, UK, 1-30 October, 2016
Flourish AwardWest Yorkshire Print Workshop, UK, 17 Sep - 29 Oct 2016
Shrinking Space, Plantasia, Swansea, UK, 07 Sep 2016
Steam Ahead, South Square Gallery, Bradford, UK, 06 Sep - 30 Oct 2016
Catching The Light, Sidney Cooper Gallery, Canterbury, UK, 27 Jul - 27 Aug 2016.
Photo Pioneer / Photo Primitive, Penwith Gallery, St Ives, Cornwall, 8 Jul - 31 Jul 2016
VOID, St John on Bethnal Green,  London, UK, 21 Jun - 27 Jul 2016
Obsolete & Discontinued, Revela T Festival 2016, Barcelona, Spain, 20 May - 15 Jun 2016.
MATTER, Royal College of Art, London, UK, 12 - 16 May 2016.
analogueNOW!, Berlin, Germany, 6 May - 14th May 2016,
Aether, Imperial College London, UK,  29 Apr - 23 May 2016
Of Stones & Stars, Print House Gallery, Dalston, London, UK, 7 Apr - 25 Apr 2016
Aether, Jarvis Dooney Gallery, Berlin, Germany, 20 Feb 2016 - 03 Apr 2016


Undisciplined, N/A Collective, The Gallery on the Corner, London, UK, 11-12 Dec 2015.
The Fourth Annual Planetary Science Art Exhibition, Washington DC, USA. 8-13th Nov 2015.
A Blue Show, The Fitzrovia Gallery, London, UK, 16th Sep - 3rd Oct 2015.
Material LightCultural Centre of Belgrade, Serbia, 30th Jul - 15 Aug 2015.
Revela T 2015, Barcelona, Spain, 19-21 Jun 2015.
On Light, UCL Malet Place in association with The Wellcome Trust. 2nd May 2015.
AETHER: UAL Showroom, London, UK, 07 Apr - 03 Jul 2015. 
Unstable, FORMAT International Photography Festival, Derby, UK,13 Mar - 12 Apr 2015.
FOYLE Commissions 2015, Four Corners Gallery, London, UK. 9-28th Mar 2015.
Lumen II, St Johns on Bethnal Green, London, UK, 9th - 28th Mar 2015.
The Story of Light Exhibition, 71A Gallery, London, UK. 23rd Jan 2015.
The Story of Light Festival, Miramar Beach, Goa, India, 14-18th Jan 2015.


Lumen I, The Crypt Gallery, London, UK, 17 - 22 Dec 2014.
Alternative Process, The Engine Room Gallery, Lancashire, UK. 11 Oct - 7 Dec 2014.
Capturing Light, Castle Museum, Lewes, UK, 4 Oct - 2 Nov 2014.
Ways of Seeing, Light Night Leeds, UK, 03 Oct 2014.
Contact Light, Article Gallery, Birmingham, UK, 24 Sep - 30 Oct 2014.
Bristol Festival of Photography, Bristol Central Library, UK, May 2014.
The Photocopy Club, Urban Spree, Berlin, Germany, Apr 2014.
Edinburgh Science FestivalAscus, City Art Centre, Edinburgh, UK, Apr 2014.
designMATTERS Exhibition, 5th Base Gallery, London, UK, March-Apr 2014,
Material Light, University of Westminster, London, UK, Nov - Dec 2013.
NESTA Gallery, London, UK, Sep 2013 - Mar 2014.


Space Is AceDoomed Gallery, London, UK, Oct 2013.
Not A Drop47 - 49 Tanner St, London, UK, Sep 2013


A Nervous Encounter, The Old Fire Station Gallery, Oxford, UK, Oct 2012.
SCAN IT, Gallery 40, Brighton, August 2012


Manchester Science Festival, The Golden Ratio, Nexus, Manchester, UK, Oct 2011.


Art In Unusual Spaces, Leeds, July 2010.


LCC Research Funding Award, March 2017
Flourish Award for Excellence in Printmaking, 2016 & 2017: Shortlisted.
Dare Prize, 2017: Shortlisted
Royal Photographic Society: International Print Exhibition 159, 2016: Shortlisted
MEAD Scholarship 2013: Shortlisted
MullenLowe NOVA Award for Central Saint Martins Degree Show 2013: Shortlisted 


Photofusion SELECT/16, Award for Alternative Processes, 2016
London Independent Photography, 28th Annual Exhibition, Espacio Gallery, 2016 
Photofusion SALON/15, Award for Alternative Processes, 2015


ISU: Arthur C Clarke Panel on Space and Culture, Space Studies Programme, Cork, Ireland, 13 July 2017
Artist Talk, Argentea Gallery, Birmingham, UK, 11 July 2017
Pointed or Pointless? Recalibrating The Index, The Photographers' Gallery, 10 June 2017
Making A Photograph: Alternative Photography, The Photographers' Gallery, 2 June 2017
Bubbles, Lapsody 2017, University of the Arts Helsinki, 24 May 2017
Re-Animating Materiality through Sound, TATE Exchange, TATE Modern, 22 March 2017
Kosmica, La Colonie, Paris, France, 20 March 2017
Pulsars & Visualisation, London Creative Networks, Space Studios, 20 January 2017
Awe and Space, Making In Transit, The Cube, 13 January 2017
BA Photojournalism and Documentary Photography, London College of Communication, 24 November 2016
Celestographs, Academic Lecture Series, Royal College of Art, 16 November 2016
MA Photography, London College of Communication, UK, 26 October 2016
Sensing Space, Kosmica, Cosmovitral Jardín Botánico, Toluca, Mexico, 7 October 2016.
Contemporary Arts Practice and Outer SpaceInternational Astronautical Congress, Guadalajara, Mexico, 28 September 2016
MiniClick Photo Talks, Brighton, UK, 14 June 2016
MA Art and Science Students, Central Saint Martins, 14 June 2016
London LASER, Central Saint Martins, London, UK, 17 May 2016
Analogue Photography International Panel Discussion, analogueNOW!,  Berlin, Germany, 14 May 2016
Material & Matter: An Insight Through PhotographyUAL Philosophy Society, London, UK, 27 April 2016
super/collider Living Photographs: Panel Discussion, Second Home, London, UK,  06 April 2016
Helsinki Photomedia 2016, Aalto University, Finland, 30 March 2016
Club Nights, The Camera Club, Kennington, London, UK, 16 March 2016.
London South Bank University, UK, 01 March 2016
Establishing & Sustaining Your Practice, Photofusion, London, UK, 25 February 2016.
 Leuphana Universität Lüneburg, Germany, 19 Feb 2016
Sight, Ma_tt_er,  London Design Festival, UK, 27 September 2015.
First Light, Uncertain States Salon, Ziferblat Cafe, London, UK, 1 September 2015.
The Photographer's Gallery, Careers Night, London, UK, 2 July 2015.
Panel Discussion on Alternative Photography Processes, Revela T Festival, Barcelona, Spain, 19 June 2015.
BA Photography Wednesday Lectures, London College of Communication, UK, 29 April 2015.
The Old Girls Club, Conway Hall, London, UK, 5 February 2015 7PM.
Photoforum, Calumet, London, UK, April 2014. - Artist Talk


Blue Dot Festival, Jodrell Bank, Macclesfield, 7-9 July 2017
Multiverse IIDronica 2016, The Old Church, Stoke Newington, London, 13 November 2016
Video Kills, Various Locations, London, 30 September 2016
Shrinking Space, Plantasia, Swansea, UK, 07 Sep 2016
MultiverseElectromagnetic Field 2016, Guildford,  5-7th August 2016
Moon Rising, Lumen Bring Your Own Beamer, Stour Space, Hackney, London, UK,  26 May 2016
Eclipse, Peckham Rye Fest, Copeland Gallery, London, UK, 13 May 2016
Homo BullaLumen Bring Your Own BeamerLumen Studios Gallery, London, UK, April 2016 
Moon Rising, Screenscapes, Contemporary Resonance, Royal College of Art, London, UK, 20 Apr 2016
Eclipse, How To Become A Cult Leader, Apiary Studios, London, UK, July 2015.
Eclipse, How To Become A Cult Leader, Total Refreshment Centre, London, UK, May 2015


Making It Real: Analogue Festival, Ugly Duck, 6-8 October 2017
Lumen Residency, Atina, Italy, 2017.
Constellations: Cassiopeia, Lumen Studios, 10 July 2017
London Pinhole Festival, Four Corners Gallery, 26-30 April 2017
Shadows Symposium II: Natural Transformations, London College of Communication, March 2017
Lumen: School of Light, Ugly Duck, February 2016
micromuseum of sleep, super/collider & Bompas and Parr, Citizen M Hotel, September 2016
Lumen Residency, Atina, Italy, 2016
Aether, Imperial College London, UK, 29 Apr - 23 May 2016
London Pinhole Festival, Worldwide Pinhole Day, Doomed Gallery, London, UK, 23-26 April 2016
Aether, Jarvis Dooney Gallery, Berlin, Germany, 20 February - 03 April 2016.
Lumen III: La Luce delle Stelle, The Crypt Gallery, Euston, London, UK, 5-6 November 2015.
Lumen Residency, Atina, Italy, 2015
Celestial Bodies, Digital Shoreditch, Shoreditch Town Hall, London, UK, May 2015.
Convenor of the Shadows Symposium at Camberwell College of Art, London, UK, May 2015.
London Pinhole FestivalDoomed Gallery, London, UK,  24-26 April 2015
Aether, UAL Showroom Gallery, London, UK, March - July 2015.
Lumen II, St John on Bethnal Green, London, UK, 13 - 28 March 2015.
Lumen, The Crypt Gallery, Euston, London, 18-21 December 2014.
Curator of Photography, London Analogue Festival, UK, September 2014.
London Pinhole Festival, Worldwide Pinhole Day, April 2014.
Glitch at Doomed Gallery, December 2013.


Various, Whitechapel Gallery Schools Programme, October 2017 - January 2018
Cyanotype, The Art Academy, 11-12 November 2017 
Chemigrams, Photofusion, 15 October 2017.
Print the Moon, Netil 360, Netil 360, Hackney Arts & Fuji Instax Film, 27 September 2017
Giant Cyanotype, Developed in Birmingham, 29 August 2017
Phosphorescence & Laser Light, Laboratory of Dark Matters, Cleveland Mining Museum, 26 July 2017
Chemigram, The Photographers' Gallery, 4 June 2017
Phosphorescence & Laser Light, Laboratory of Dark Matters, Guest Projects, 7 April 2017
Cyanotype, Hackney Arts, 6 April 2017
Cyanotype, Imaging The Invisible, Making In Transit, The Cube London, 27 January 2016
Cyanotype, Kosmica, Cosmovitral Jardín Botánico Toluca, Mexico, 9 October 2016.
Chemigrams, Photofusion, London, UK, 
Cyanotype, Under The Owls Festival, Leeds Kirkgate Market, 29 July 2016
Cameraless Photography, Photofusion, London, UK, 17 July 2016
Coffee Tin Pinhole Cameras, Photofusion, London, UK, 3 July 2016
Chemigrams, Photofusion, London, UK, 26 June 2016
Cyanotype, Wandsworth Preparatory School, London, UK, 22 June 2016
Darkroom Photography: Analogue Processes, University of the Arts London Short Course, London College of Communication, UK, 18 June 2016.
Cyanotype, The Institute of Physics: Brewing Up A Storm, London, UK, 8th June 2016 
Black and White Darkroom Techniques, University of the Arts London Short Course, London College of Communication, UK, 4th June 2016.
Experimental Camera-Less Photography Processes, South Hampstead High School, London, UK, 30 Jan 2016
Cyanotype, University of Westminster Photography Students, London, UK, 4 Nov 2015.
Reflection and Refraction, super/collider Light Play workshop, TATE Britain, London, UK, 1 Nov 2015.
Cyanotype, SALT Festival, Sandhornøy, Norway, 28 - 29 Aug 2015.
Cyanotype, The Photographer's Gallery, London, UK, 23 Jul 2015.
Cyanotype, Institute of Conservation's Book and Paper Group, London, UK, Mar & Jun 2015.
Cyanotype, Ditto Press, 6 Nov 2014.
Coffee Tin Pinhole Camera, Castle Museum, Brighton Photo Biennal, UK, 26 - 27 Oct 2014.
Cyanotype Workshop, London College of Communication, UK, Jun 2014.
Cyanotype, The Grundy Art Gallery, Blackpool, UK, April 2012

First Light, Inside The Outside, June 2017
Aether Interview, super/collider, February 2016
Liliane Lijn Interview, Light and Dark Matters at TATE Modern, January 2016
A Cosmonaut's Trip Interview at ICA, Micro Macro Films, January 2016
Katie Paterson Interview, Light and Dark Matters at TATE Modern, December 2015
Impossible Magazine, The Impossible Project, August 2015.
Astro Arts Blog, Artist of the Month, April 2015.
The Nuclear Sublimesuper-collider, November 2014.
Metaphors in Art & Science: The Bubble As A Metaphor for the Brevity of Life, MA Art and Science Thesis, 2013.
Learning from Vanitas Art & The Day of the Dead, Wild Culture Magazine, November 2013.
Curious at West Norwood Cemetery, Wild Culture Magazine, August 2013