Natus Residency: Keith Bloody Mary

We’re excited to announce that the artist undertaking our Natus Residency over the summer will be Manchester-based Keith Bloody Mary. Alice Thickett, who works under the pseudonym Keith Bloody Mary, is currently studying for an MA in Visual Culture at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her work is most often found in bars, pubs, and illustrated zines – most notably she designed a cover and double page spread for Nottingham magazine Left Lion earlier this year.

Keith will spend a number of days working in the Wigan STEAM Gallery as an open studio, before exhibiting in August. During the residency, Keith will piece together collage relating to biology, genetics, and mutations much like a new age Dr Frankenstein. Through farming, industry and DNA programming, humans continue to change the planet bringing us into a new era called the Anthropocene. With a humorous twist, Keith will be investigating the research and biological experiments humans are currently engaging in that are having a direct impact on the earth.

‘we’re going to need a bigger boat’ 2018

Keith is also going to be running some workshops which will feed into her project, here’s your chance to get involved!

In ‘Cut, Paste, Repeat’, Keith invites you to create a new artist name for yourself before making collage pieces with a slight twist. Like conducting scientific research you’ll be using trial and error and (artistic) experimentation to piece together a collage using pre-prepared images. You can find out more information and book here:

In ‘Frankenart’, participants will take the role of an artistic Frankenstein in this relaxed collage workshop. Use pictures of body parts and objects from magazines to make the humans of the future. Every creature, cyborg and mutant will be used to put together a zine, which will be available for people to take home during Keith Bloody Mary’s exhibition in the gallery in August.
Find out more information and book onto this one here:

You can visit Keith Bloody Mary’s open studio from Tuesday 17th July – Tuesday 7th August, and her exhibition from Saturday 11th August – Saturday 1st September. Additionally, you can join us for the exhibition opening on Saturday 11th August from 1pm – 3pm.


Summer of Star Wars

Calling all Younglings and Padawans! This summer we have a Star Wars theme running through all of our activity workshops- check out our events page or go to our Eventbrite page.

Join us, and together we can rule the galaxy as artists and geeks!

For more on what is happening at Wigan STEAM this summer check out our  Summer Programme!


Artist Spotlight: Liz Chapman

My name is Liz Chapman; I am a Wigan-based artist and associate artist at Cross Street Arts in Standish. I studied Art and Design (Fine Art) at both college and university and have a BA Honours degree in Art History. I enjoy creating art work, delivering art workshops and occasionally curating exhibitions. I work with digital technology, helping people get online and coordinate an Arts Council England funded digital art project called D:Circus for Wigan Libraries.

I love the arts, travelling, science, heritage, textiles and nature. My greatest artistic inspiration comes from looking closely at the natural world. I have inherited many of my interests from my family. Some of my earliest memories are of visiting museums and spending time in our garden with my family. I have also inherited their keen interest in continuing to learn; when I draw and create art work, it inspires me to find more information about nature and I’m particularly interested in learning how to identify plants and birds.

My art work uses a range of media to explore and document the world around me. I experiment with digital media, photo, moving-image, fabrics, pen and pencil to recreate the qualitative elements of my everyday environment. My art work is an attentive exploration and intends to express my fascination with science and nature; through abstraction and highlighting the patterns, weave and weft, colour and shapes that often go unnoticed in the world around us. I take inspiration from artists such as Paul Morrison, Angie Lewin, Yayoi Kusama and Edith Holden, who was made famous by the 1977 publication of her Nature Notes for 1906 under the title The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady.

I recently exhibited my (first ever!) solo exhibition Florum Machina at Wigan STEAM. I was super excited to see an advert in the summer of 2017 for the opportunity to hold an exhibition at Wigan STEAM. I chose to exhibit there because I love the work of Wigan STEAM and have an interest in art, science and technology. My exhibition is named after the Latin for flower machine. ‘Florum Machina’ presented an interactive sculpture, alongside a series of botanical illustrations which informed its creation. Inspired by the machines and contraptions designed by cartoonists Rube Goldberg and W. Heath Robinson, centrepiece of the exhibition ‘The Flower Machine’ is a blend of the organic and technological. My drawings were based on historical botanical illustrations of wild flowers and plants found around the UK. The usage of Latin in titling the show pays homage to these original illustrations.

I’m currently contributing on an artist-led collaborative platform via Instagram called Objectivity Works, which provides a curated space between objects and artists. I have been working with a small headless figurine creating video and photographic works responding to the idea of lost and found objects. I will hopefully be exhibiting more art work later on in the year as well. More about my work and what I do can be found on my website and on Twitter and Instagram @LizChapmanArts.

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