Between the Lines (exhibition)

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No booking required

Contact information

LU Arts
01509 222948

Art and Science combine to convey the recent lived experiences of international students through DNA data storage.

Between the Lines is a creative intervention by digital artist Sarah Selby, which uses DNA data storage to draw attention to the lived experiences of international students studying in Higher Education institutions in the UK.

DNA data storage is an emerging technology that allows digital information to be encoded into synthetic (laboratory created) DNA. In the same way that we can store data on memory sticks or the cloud, DNA can also be used as a digital storage medium, with the digital data retrieved via DNA sequencing.

In this project, the digital data is the written testimonies of international students who have faced difficult immigration practices, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. Thanks to Twist Bioscience, these testimonies have been encoded into synthetic DNA which has been embedded into writing ink and then inserted into pens to be distributed to UK Higher Education institutions.

As part of her research for this project, Selby met with research groups and academics from Loughborough University including the Politicised Practice Research Group and the Centre for Biological Engineering as well students and student groups such as Loughborough FemSoc.

The exhibition itself will resemble a lab space, documenting the processes and technology involved in Selby’s project and showing how art can work across disciplines.

About Sarah Selby

Sarah Selby is an interdisciplinary artist exploring digital culture through creative applications of emerging and pervasive technology. Her work blurs the boundaries between the digital and physical, manifesting intangible systems and interactions to explore how they overlap, contradict and impact one another. Sarah was the winner of arebyte Gallery’s ‘Hotel Generation’ programme resulting in the production of ‘Raised by Google’, featured in FAD magazine and Timeout. She was shortlisted for The Ashurst Emerging Artist Prize for her interactive artwork ‘If you leave it up to the audience, they can kill you’ and was also selected to participate in Roche Continents, an international residency exploring sources of inspiration at the intersection of science and art. Sarah is a member of ‘The Immersive Kind’, a multidisciplinary collective exploring a tomorrow that is accessible, inclusive and sustainable through pioneering creative technology.

Find out more about Sarah’s work


There is ramp access to the gallery to the left of the main entrance. Please alert the exhibition invigilator if you require assistance and access. A gender-neutral, accessible toilet is available on the ground floor of Martin Hall. If you have any specific access needs that you would like to discuss in advance of visiting the exhibition then please call us on 01509 222948 or email

Covid-19 measures

Social distancing guidance remains in place on campus so please maintain a safe distance from others when visiting the exhibition. To help with this, numbers will be restricted and doorways and windows will be open to increase ventilation. A facemask should be worn unless you have a medical exemption.

Christmas closure: Please note that the exhibition will close for Christmas on Thursday 23 December and will reopen on Tuesday 4 January 2022.