This article addresses certain enduring interests that the British artist Helen Chadwick (1953–1996) pursued over the course of her career. While she produced a diverse range of work using a wide range of media, the article will focus on her theoretical considerations of the conjunction of self and world, emphasizing her interest in, and the importance she attached to, the understanding of nature and our place “within” it. She was dissatisfied with received explanations of this relationship, which in her view remained more or less within a Newtonian, mechanical framework. Her research and practice signaled an alternate approach, a “viral technique,” informed by and accommodating her interest in modern biology and physics.

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