New exhibition takes art into outer space

13th April 2022

What do you see when you look at the starry night sky?  

A new exhibition at The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery, University of Leeds, shines a light on contemporary artists who use and challenge the newest technologies for space imaging in their art practice. 

Guest curated by visual artist Hondartza Fraga, Seeing Stars explores our long lasting fascination with outer space: from ancient civilisations who saw stories in the stars, to modern day technology bringing us closer than ever to the cosmos. 

Opening at a special preview event on Tuesday 26 April, the exhibition asks whether the spectacular astronomical images modern science has given us have eclipsed the human imagination, which in the past led to tales of gods, monsters and more? 

Highlighting the work of contemporary artists, this exhibition brings the human sense of wonder back into sharp focus – blurring the line between fact and fiction. 

Exhibition curator, and practice-led PhD student at the School of Design at the University of Leeds, Hondartza Fraga said: 

“The advances in imaging technology mean that we are getting used to seeing ‘perfect’ images of space, to seeing farther and farther away. But those seamless images are usually careful constructions, composed out of many pictures. We are getting better and better at smoothing over the limits, errors, noise of our technologies. Art, I believe, is always ready to consider those imperfections, to embrace them even – this is a core theme in the exhibition. “

Fraga’s work ‘Saturn and Melancholy (Diptych)’ will be on display for the first time in this exhibition.  

Other exhibiting artists include Stella Baraklianou, who is creating work especially for the exhibition, Vija Celmins, Zachary Eastwood-Bloom, Lia Halloran, Mishka Henner, Julia F. Hill, Risa Horowitz, Melanie King, Mark Lascelles-Thornton, Paul Magee and Thomas Ruff.  

Seeing Stars, opens on Wednesday 27 April 2022 at The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery and runs until Saturday 30 July 2022. Entry is free. For more details and opening times, visit