Your Body is a Space That Sees

Upcoming Solo Exhibition April 1 - May 17, 2017

Luis De Jesus Los Angeles
2685 S La Cienega Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90034 | T 310 838 6000


los angeles contemporary 2017 lia halloran

Art Los Angeles Contemporary 2017

JANUARY 26-29, 2017

Booth B5
The Barker Hangar
Santa Monica, CA

Luis de Jesus will present selections from three new series of works by Los Angeles artists Lia Halloran, Britton Tolliver, and Masood Kamandy at Art Los Angeles Contemporary 2017. All three artists will be presenting solo exhibitions at the gallery this Winter and Spring.

The Glass Universe: Dava Sobel in Conversation with Lia Halloran, Hosted by Janna Levin

Pioneer Works is pleased to host New York Times bestselling author Dava Sobel in conversation with artist Lia Halloran to discuss Sobel’s new book, The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars.


The Glass Universe tells the riveting story of “Pickering’s Harem,” a group of remarkable women hired as “computers” by Charles Pickering, the devoted director of the Harvard College Observatory. Paid 25 cents an hour, the female computers made critical contributions to our understanding of the universe before women had the right to vote. As photography transformed the practice of astronomy, they turned to studying the stars captured nightly on glass photographic plates. The women of the Harvard College Observatory leveraged the “glass universe” of a half-million plates amassed in this period to make extraordinary discoveries that attracted worldwide acclaim.

Artist Lia Halloran expands the conversation with her perspective as an artist, having studied the glass plates for her own ongoing series Your Body is a Space that Sees, which has been awarded an Art Works Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Lia Halloran, Assistant Professor of Art and Director of the Painting and Drawing Department at Chapman University.

Dava Sobel, New York Times bestselling author of The Glass Universe.



Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics
1216 East California Boulevard
Pasadena, CA 91125

**Parking is available behind Cahill in Structure 3, or on California Street (campus map)


Cahill, Hameetman Auditorium – Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics

Artists Lia Halloran and Maria Popova in conversation about the exhibition "Deep Sky Companion," currently on view at Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics.

Maria Popova is a reader and a writer, and writes about what she reads on Brain Pickings, which is included in the Library of Congress archives of culturally valuable materials. She has also written for The New York Times, Wired UK, and The Atlantic, among others, and is an MIT Fellow.

This event is free and open to all; no tickets or reservations are required.


We associate blueprints with architectural drawings but Los Angeles artist and astrophysics enthusiast Lia Halloran has used the cyanotype technique for her extraordinary series Your Body Is A Space That Sees. Her prints pay long overdue homage to female astronomers – depicting craters, comets, galaxies and constellations. Rosie Gailor talks to Lia Halloran about her stellar work.

Read the rest of the interview here!



On Saturday, November 12, 2016, SACI Studio Arts College International hosted the symposium From Galileo to Mars - Renaissance of the ArtSciences, a day dedicated to the developments in the relationship between arts and sciences, analyzed by distinguished guests such as the Deputy Administrator of NASA Data Newman, NASA astronaut, engineer and artist Nicole Stott, Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli, architect and designer Guillermo Trotti, CEO of Dainese D-air Lab Vittorio Cafaggi, and artist and professor Lia Halloran.

Read the full press release here!



UNCERTAINTY is the latest in a series of exhibitions exploring the intersection of science and art at ArtCenter’s Williamson Gallery. Nine installations authored by artists and scientists have been assembled for an exhibition that ponders the edges of knowledge and perception, and explores the poetics of data visualization.

Curated by Williamson Gallery director Stephen Nowlin, UNCERTAINTY features works by Jim Campbell, Jonathan Corum, Marc Fichou, Donald A. Glaser (1926-2013), Lia Halloran, Thomas McCauley, Owen Schuh, Edward Tufte and The Einstein Collective (artist Sara Mast, architect Jessica Jellison, artist and animator Christopher O'Leary, filmmaker Cindy Stillwell, sound artist and composer Jason Bolte, physicist Charles Kankelborg, physicist Nico Yunes, physicist Joey Shapiro Key).

This exhibition will feature an exhibition catalog. For more information on the exhibition.

OPENING RECEPTION: Thursday, October 20, 2016, 8:30pm - 10pm

DATES OF THE EXHIBITION: Tuesday, October 11, 2016 - Sunday, January 22, 2017

ArtCenter Hillside Campus
Williamson Gallery

1700 Lida St.
Pasadena, CA 91103



Check out Darling Magazine Issue No. 17 - Time featuring an interview with Kip Thorne and Lia Halloran by Theresa Miller Archer, photographed by Smith-Davis with styling by Dolly Pratt, hair by Aviva Perea using Oribe at Starworks Artists, and makeup by Heather Cvar.

Order a copy of the issue here!




For her latest exhibition, called “Deep Sky Companion,” artist Lia Halloran was inspired not by the accomplishments, but by the frustrations, of a celebrated astronomer. Charles Messier was an 18th-century Frenchman who became known in his lifetime for meticulously recording a catalog of 110 celestial features found in the night sky. The thing is, he considered those features distractions from his main pursuit: comets....

Check out the rest of this amazing feature about the "Deep Sky Companion Series" by Science Friday written by Chau Tu here.


Summer Residency at Pioneer Works

in Brooklyn, NY July 2016

Thank you so much Jennifer Ouellette for the feature about the "Deep Sky Companion Series" that is up at the Cahill Center of Astronomy at Caltech until December 18th, 2016! You can read the full article here.

This Exhibit Makes Cosmic Art Out Of The Night Sky

21 June 2016 7:30 PM

A classic 18th century astronomy catalogue of galaxies and nebulae is the inspiration for Deep Sky Companion, a series of 110 pairs of paintings and photographs of objects visible in the night sky by artist Lia Halloran, currently on exhibit at Caltech in Pasadena California.

The daughter of a physicist, Halloran’s work has always been informed by science. For Deep Sky Companion, she drew inspiration from the catalogue of objects compiled by French astronomer Charles Messier in the 18th century. Messier actually made the catalogue out of frustration. He was hunting for comets and wanted to rule out other objects in the night sky that might impede his search. He had no idea he was observing entire galaxies and interstellar nebulae.

When her father gave her a Celeron telescope one Christmas in university, Halloran discovered the joy of amateur astronomy. As she writes in the exhibition catalogue:

Viewing Saturn from my rooftop was somehow far more impactful on me than the jaw-dropping images from the Cassini satellite because I could experience space, and understand that I was in fact a space traveller on a celestial rock, looking out at another rock travelling in space. Observing the Orion Nebula and nearby galaxies seemed to create a fold in time between myself and Messier. I would imagine his observing sessions and the drawings he made through his telescope to classify the natural world and make sense of the unknown above him.

There’s science behind her method of creating the pieces too. For the current exhibit, Halloran used the same cyanotype printing process she used for Your Body is a Space That Sees, an homage to women astronomers throughout history, from Hypatia and Caroline Herschel, to Cecelia Payne, Henrietta Leavitt and Jocelyn Bell.

She started by creating paintings of the Messier objects — all 110 of them — using blue ink on drafting film. Then she used that as negative to make positive prints of her paintings on photosensitive paper using the conventional black-and-white darkroom printing process. It just happens to mimic early astrophotography using glass plates.

When it came to displaying her work in Caltech’s signature Cahill Center, the building’s unique architecture presented a challenge, with its slanted ceilings and odd asymmetric planes. The solution: Crop the paintings into a series of circles and scatter them throughout Cahill’s exotic stairwell, bringing a sense of what it’s like to view objects in deep space to the experience.

Deep Sky Companion will be on exhibit at Caltech’s Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics through December. You can check out more of Halloran’s work on her website.

Big thanks to Brain Pickings for featuring the project 'Your Body is a Space That Sees'! You can read the full article here

Lia Halloran: Deep Sky Companion exhibition opens at Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics at the California Institute of Technology

 June 5th - December 18th, 2016

 Opening Reception: June 5th, 2016 3:00pm-5:30pm.

Exhibition walk-through with Dr. Kip Thorne and Lia Halloran, 4:00pm.

Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics
1216 East California Boulevard
Pasadena, CA 91125
**Parking is available behind Cahill in Structure 3, or on California Street.

Los Angeles-based artist Lia Halloran tests the boundaries between seeing, classifying, and reproducing deep-sky objects against those catalogued by French astronomer Charles Messier. Her new site-specific work, Deep Sky Companion, is both an adaptation and variation of on the visual data comprising Messier’s 110 deep sky objects that he observed in his attempt to chart comets (when, in fact, he had “accidentally” observed whole galaxies and interstellar nebulae). Slanted ceilings, extreme planes, and every possible expression of asymmetry are ideal settings for Halloran’s iterations of Messier’s amorphous cosmic bodies. The works climb upwards through three stories at varying distances from the viewer; installation directly mimics the inherent difficulty a person would experience in looking at objects in deep space.

M1-M110, Cliché-verre photographic prints created using painted negatives, 2015, 14 x 14 inches.



Deep Sky Exhibition Card_front_bleed copy.jpg



Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences is excited to announce that Art Professor Lia Halloran has been awarded a NEA Art Works Grant for her project, “Your Body Is a Space That Sees.”

The two year project is based on the research and creation of a body of artwork and a female-centric astronomical catalog that traces major discoveries of women in astronomy since antiquity. The series will use the experimental photo-painting process of Cliché Verre to mimic early astronomical glass plates, reinterpreting innovations of Hypatia of Alexandria, Caroline Herschel, and the ‘Harvard Computers,’ among others. Research will be done at Harvard College Observatory’s extensive glass plate collection of astronomical images. This project will culminate with a catalog of imagery and written pieces from contemporary female authors in literature, poetry and physics in order to offer an interdisciplinary re-visualization of the sky to the art and science community. Public programming will include exhibitions at the Chapman Guggenheim Gallery and Cahill Center at Caltech.

The first exhibition of this work is scheduled at the Delaware Center of Contemporary Art from March 25- June 26th, 2017 with an accompanying symposium mid-April. 

Read the full article here

Gallery of works here


Curated by Lia Halloran & Rebecca Campbell

Fine Arts Gallery, CalState Los Angeles
October 5th- October 29th, 2015
Opening Reception October 10th, 4-7pm

This exhibition is designed to explore the transitive state where contradictions of beauty and horror, comfort and terror, or separate and collective, that order our everyday lives, liquefy in a way in which dichotomies become fusions and experiences that may seem mutually exclusive synthesize into a multiplicity of truths. This exhibition ‘Better Far Pursue a Frivolous Trade by Serious Means, than a Sublime Art Frivolously’ offers the viewer the opportunity to reflect on a relationship to the sublime, the title a passage from a poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning in 1894.

Hernan Bas
Heather Brown
Rebecca Campbell
Ain Cocke
Zackary Drucker
Carlee Fernandez
Patricia Fernandez
Ben Jackel
Tim Hawkinson
Lia Halloran
Laura Krifka
Monica Majoli
Cathy Opie
Jen Stark
Allison Schulnik

View the exhibition here


Video about the course 'The Intersection of Art and Science' at Chapman University in partnership with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, including a night of observing at Mt. Wilson Observatory and a sound bath time-traveling experience at the Intergratron, in Joshua Tree CA.

Download the class catalog

Read the class blog


143 N. Glassell St. Orange
September 14th, 2015 at 6pm

Science on Tap is a series of casual moderated discussions featuring experts who explore the intersection of science and culture. ChapmanU Science on Tap is for science lovers (and novices) in the community who want to enjoy good beer, good food, and fascinating conversation. Intersection of Art and Science with Lia Halloran, assistant Professor of Art at Chapman University


Paramount Pictures Studios Los Angeles, CA
May 1 - 3, 2015

Featuring three new works from the series DARK SKATE/ PASSAGE


CARVING THE COSMOS: Artist Lia Halloran On Astrophysics, the LA River, and Hanging Ten.

By Lindsay Preston, LA Canvas, print interview Sept/Oct 2014. 




Chapman Magazine, Fall 2014 by Mary Platt
Follow along the adventures of Lia Halloran’s course ‘The Intersection of Art, Collaborations with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’

Read the full article here

Download the class catalog

Read the class blog



Royal Art Academy, Stockholm, Sweden
2pm Friday, January 17th, 2015



Chapman University’s elite Wang-Fradkin Professorships were awarded to professors from Schmid College of Science and Technology and Wilkinson College of Humanities and Science at the 19th Annual Chapman University Faculty Honors Convocation, held Friday in the George H.W. Bush Conference Center. The Junior Wang-Fradkin Professorship went to Lia Halloran, assistant professor in the Department of Art. Halloran is a visual artist. Halloran’s work often makes use of scientific concepts as a starting point and explores how perception, time and scale inform the human desire to understand the world.

Read about it here



Jan. 14th - Feb. 18th 2014
Opening: Tuesday, Jan. 14th 2014, 6 - 9pm
SACI Gallery, Florence, Italy

Presentation in SACI’s Clayton Hubbs Lecture Hall (Palazzo dei Cartelloni): Lia Halloran, SACI alumna (Fall 1997-Spring 1998) and Assistant Professor at the Chapman University Department of Art, on her career as an artist.

Wunderkammer, or Wonder Rooms were early private cabinets of curiosities, which contained collections of objects, minerals, and taxidermy animals of the natural world which science had yet to categorize. For the exhibition ‘The Wonder Room’ Lia Halloran has created over 30 new works for the SACI gallery based on specimens in the oldest science museum in Europe, ‘La Specola’, still located in its original location next to the Pitti Palace and contains the famous collection of anatomical waxes from the 18th century. Several years ago Halloran spent a week in La Specola documenting various parts of the museum and was especially fascinated by the Monkeys and Hummingbirds because of their macabre and delicate nature. These documentations (notes, drawings, photographs) were then used as a reference to paint a negative in reverse which was then used in a darkroom to create a positive image of the creatures resulting in a an image which strange nature is not entirely drawing yet not entirely a photograph either.



Dec. 5th - Dec. 8th 2013
Pulse Miami w/ Martha Otero Gallery

PhotoLab18_1_13 FNL Crop.jpg


Oct. 4th - Dec. 9th 2013
Opening: Friday, Oct. 4th 2013, 7 - 9pm
Hilger NEXT, Vienna, Austria


OUTSIDE THE LINES: An Artists' Coloring Book for Giant Imaginations

Curated by Souris Hong-Porretta
Book Launch: Saturday, Sep. 21 2013, 3–6pm
MOCA / MOCA Store at MOCA Grand Ave.

Halloran - Barite.jpg


May 5th - June 16th, 2012
Opening: Saturday, May 5th 2012, 6 - 8pm
Martha Otero Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

With a devoted interest in physics, chemistry and the behavior of natural elements in the guise of contemporary art practices, Lia Halloran stages her solo exhibition Sublimation as a simultaneous investigation into the human form and the passage of time, where flesh undergoes a metamorphosis into crystallized figures.

The active process for Halloran begins less at the moment her hand applies the ink to the medium and more when the ink remarkably self-animates and migrates over the surface. What begins as a dual depiction of close friends used as live models and crystalline forms becomes a performance; the unpredictable nature of the heavy blue ink acts upon and within the smooth, oily paper. Halloran describes this work as a 'negotiation' between the medium, engaging in a game of action and reaction via ink pen, creating an image fluctuating between strict representation, the intangible object and the inherent fluidity of the medium.

Halloran will also show a unique incarnation of the Periodic Table of Elements, re-interpreting and combining figures into various chemical states of the 118 elements. These flourishing visuals, presented in the same layout as the classic Table, serve as capsules of potential energy. In Halloran's research of the dynamic form of chemicals, gases and metals, she harness explosive moment and inertia together in her subjects; some fully realized as human figures, other camouflaged into the hardened natural elements, themselves, manifesting a kind of dormant but sensually charged aesthetic dialogue.