Why do artists do what they do, and how they do it?

Something To Do With Art is a podcast that explores and celebrates artistic creativity and experimentation. Seven brand new episodes are now live on SoundCloud, featuring conversations with artists Amanda Couch, Egidija Čiricaitė, Karen Frances Eng, Madi Acharya-Baskerville, MOOGZ, Matthew Chesney and Philip Harris.

In this series you can hear about hacking into a nuclear installation (legally) and making art from it (MOOGZ), divining the future using entrails (Amanda Couch), being in the naughty corner at an exhibition (Madi Acharya-Baskerville) and much more besides. Plus Matthew Chesney, director of Backlit Gallery Nottingham shares the importance of art and community, and why art is never more needed in the current times.

Starting next week, this blog will feature each artist in turn and I will share some thoughts about the episode and discuss some of my favourite moments and learning points. First up will be Amanda Couch.

In the meantime, do head over to soundcloud.com/robertgood_art and take a listen.


My conversation with Gudrun took place at her home in Suffolk in a tiny space at the back of the house from which she runs her Arts Territory Exchange (ATE) project to connect artists living remotely in different parts of the world. ATE seemed to me to be partly an artistic matchmaking service and partly an alternative arts network that is away from the mainstream art world, so I was keen to find out from Gudrun her motives for setting it up and how she goes about making connections.

During our conversation Gudrun told me how her ATE Instagram account with over 5000 followers was irretrievably deleted by a bot, and how that incident fuelled her desire to pursue an alternative way of communication that does not rely on the internet or the big tech companies. This has led her to study electronics in order to build her own ham radio and go off grid.

Many thanks to Gudrun for a lovely visit.

You can listen to this episode here: https://soundcloud.com/robertgood_art/Gudrun-Filipska




Next week: Alan Smith and Helen Ratcliffe tell me how (and why) they set up an art retreat in a remote corner of rural England.


Philip Harris is researcher, image maker and senior lecturer at the University of Derby. He has a love of old, analogue technology which I originally mistook for a sense of nostalgia. However, Phil describes his approach to his work in a very different light, thinking instead in terms of the political, economic and social dynamics that play out through his choice of old tech. In fact, Phil is wary of falling into any form of nostalgia trap.

Our conversation took place in the open campus of the University of Derby, and I was struck by Phil’s passion both for his work and his vocation as a teacher. Phil describes the thinking behind ‘River-Film’, an immersive installation featuring a dozen or so cine projectors screeching and whirring as the film loops like an old mill loom, and I was so intrigued that I subsequently went along to see it in situ at Cromford Mill in Derbyshire. It did not disappoint and indeed was one of the best shows that I have seen for a long time.

Phil also tells me about his lockdown projection of a massive moving image of Boris Johnson on the outside wall of his house, and how his neighbours reacted to this impromptu screening.

I came away from this conversation with plenty of food for thought. Thanks Phil!

You can listen to this episode here: https://soundcloud.com/robertgood_art/philip-harris

This is the last episode in the current series, and so the last epsiode of this blog. I hope you have enjoyed them and I would love your thoughts, comments and  feedback via any of the usual channels.


MOOGZ is an ethical hacker who specialises in (legitimate and pre-authorised) attacks on nuclear installations and government facilities. He is also a sound artist who uses the sounds of the internet and everyday life to create sonic landscapes.

Our conversation took place in a magnificent apartment on the 33rd floor in Canary Wharf, London, where MOOGZ works and is also setting up a new creative space ‘Above the Clouds’ to host new tech, creative and augmented reality work.

I must admit that I particularly wanted to catch up with MOOGZ to find out more about the dark underbelly of the internet, and to see what might be really going on in the world of cybercrime and cyberintelligence, but I was also very taken by his sonic work [Malignancy], recorded over the course of 12 years as his mother Angela underwent radiotherapy, and so I want to find out more about how (and why) he chose to make recordings of such a personal and difficult journey.

This was one of the most singular of my podcast conversations, as I tried to get my head round the cops-and-robbers dynamic of hacking. Was MOOGZ really a good guy? Was he hacking me even as we were talking? I realised that I would never know. But a throw-away comment about a video made by Boston Dynamics has stayed with me ever since.

MOOGZ had literally just moved in when I visited, and there was no furniture to baffle the sound, so the recording has an echo-ey, slightly machine-like quality to it, which is perhaps fitting for the subject of our conversation.

Thanks MOOGZ!

You can listen to this episode here: https://soundcloud.com/robertgood_art/moogz

Next week: last but most definitely not least researcher, image maker and senior lecturer Philip Harris shares his love of analogue cine media and I find out that his use of old technology is most definitely not a nostalgia trip.


Matt Chesney is an artist whose own work is based around performance, video and sculpture. He is also the founder and director of Backlit Nottingham, a gallery and studio complex based in a large industrial building with a fascinating history and links to human rights, anti-slavery and adult education for all.

Our conversation took place at Backlit in the summer just as lockdown ended and we were all trying to find our feet again and emerge back into the world. Matt showed me round the site and we previewed the first show that they were installing since lockdown. Matt was also very excited for a special visitor to Backlit who was arriving later in the day.

I particularly wanted to catch up with Matt to find out more about how he sees the role of the gallery and the curator in the art ecosystem. What choices does he make and why? I also was keen to hear the Backlit story and how he had managed to build up such a successful and thriving art community from a standing start. I was super-impressed by Matt’s commitment and drive, and his real sense of care and responsibility for all that they do.

This turned into one of those heart-warming conversations where you really feel the positive way in which art is such an important part of our social fabric. Thanks Matt!

You can listen to this episode here: https://soundcloud.com/robertgood_art/matthew-chesney

Next week: sound artist and ethical hacker MOOGZ tells me about his project [Malignancy], recorded over the course of 12 years as his mother Angela underwent radiotherapy, and how he has a soft spot for hacking nuclear installations.


Madi Acharya-Baskerville creates mixed media sculptures using found objects and discarded ephemera to explore themes including environmental concerns, migration and exile and gender issues.  Our conversation took place at her studio in Oxford, which was full of neatly piled boxes of found materials waiting to be used.

I particularly wanted to catch up with Madi after she had made a chance remark to me about the possibility of a Library of Lies as a conceptual counterpoint to my own Library of Truth. But in fact our discussions ranged widely over a number of topics to do with the creative process, and Madi shows me some of her recent work, including a three-buttocked sculpture that takes me somewhat by surprise.

I always enjoy recording these podcasts and being curious about what everyone is getting up to, and this episode felt like it was the most playful of the current series.

In this episode we also consider the relationship between art and ideas, and  Madi also tells me that she is thinking about writing a novel. I’m very much looking forward to reading it.

You can listen to this episode here: https://soundcloud.com/robertgood_art/madi-acharya-baskerville

Next week: Matt Chesney, director of Backlit Gallery Nottingham, tells me how (and why) he started the gallery and he explains the importance of community in everything that they do.