Tuesday Talk - Art Gene: Maddi Nicholson and Stuart Bastik

Tuesday Talk - Art Gene: Maddi Nicholson and Stuart Bastik


Maddi Nicholson and Stuart Bastik discuss their work in relation to Change & Interchange: Environment

Maddi Nicholson discusses her work in relation to themes of Environment | Landscape, as part of the Peter Scott Galley & Fine Art Department's Tuesday Talks series.

Nicholson's Resting on Arms, and research facility Art Gene co-founder Stuart Bastik's The impossibility of reliable judgements in the mind of an aesthete, are displayed in the exhibition which accompanies the Tuesday Talks. The exhibition and weekly talks are part of a wider programme of exhibitions, events and knowledge-exchange in the Peter Scott Gallery, titled Change & Interchange.

Please visit Change & Interchange for a full programme.

Maddi Nicholson


Maddi Nicholson and Stuart Bastik founded and lead Art Gene; an independent (inter)national Research Facility.

Maddi Nicholson’s work is diverse, ranging from inflated sculpture, to video, stitching and drawing. Her interests focus around people and the shape and reasoning of  the place they make in their environment.

Marks folk make on the land, the place they make as a home, the shed, the resting place, the way they show they existed, the evidenced human hand.

In the work  ‘Real Estate’ it was an inflated lifesize Barrow terraced house, she took on tour around Cumbria beauty spots.  The house had the same foot print as the pig sties she grew up with on a small holding in North Cumbria.

In ‘Apartments for rent, beautiful views interesting neighbors’ a bird box cliff world she created, housed her hybrid anthropomorphic models citizens, in a an acutely observed pastiche on life.

"Resting on Arms Reversed" is a drill stance, adopted by the honour guard standing in vigil at military funerals  since the First world War (1914-1918). The rifle barrel down, and the solider resting his hands on the rifle butt.

In Nicholson’s  piece ‘Resting on Arm’s the models of British birds are kitted out in British camouflage and rest on rifle Butts.

The birds are models for a larger work a non civic War memorial for a Natural England’s National Nature Reserve on North Walney, Barrow.  A former training ground, with gun range and practice trenches for men who went off to both World Wars and never returned.

Here the flock of birds in British camo rest on a gate before they take flight.

Maddi Nicholson is co founder director of Art Gene in Barrow – in - Furness, engaging artist’s with the social natural and built environment.

Stuart Bastik


Bastik is an artist, thinker & occasional poet. Sometimes described as a radical, he is certainly a passionate generalist who advocates knowing a little about a lot. He sees knowledge of the complex connections between things through time played out in our landscapes as a driving force for sustainable change.

“Our whole environment can be a work of art – in theory at least; yet with nature, art, industry & people as we all know, the true value lies beyond the aesthetic…”