Genetics Gym

Adam Peacock


The Genetics Gym is an ongoing research project, depicting a calculated fiction of modified bodies, edited with hypothetical new and emerging genetic technologies, allowing in-depth exploration to question how the internet is affecting human behavior. The project, spanning 5 years, is built upon the Darwinian construct that what an evolutionary biologist might term perception of genetic strength, we might term appeal, attraction, or ‘sexiness,’ now playing out in a vastly complex new media age. The ongoing project is designed to engage varied audiences and perspectives into a multi-layered conversation on the effects of new media today, with emphasis upon queer and marginalized identities, homogenization, and non-binary, observing the link between cognitive perception of genes and visual appeal. The project is built upon Marshall McLuhan’s theories on electric circuitry as an extension of the central nervous system, Norbert Wiener’s Cybernetic theories, and evolutionary psychology. The initial project outcome was an installation that went on to be toured, exhibited, and published internationally, and has led to Phase II that will take place in Oslo, Norway in summer 2021.


Commissioned by the Fashion Space Gallery
Creative & strategic direction: Adam Peacock
Project management: Fashion Space Gallery Team

Research lead: Adam Peacock
Applied psychology consultant: Prof. Carolyn Mair (London College of Fashion)
Genetic technology consultant: Dr. Helen C. O’Neill (UCL)
Genetic technology research: Ashley Campbell, Liane Stein (UCL)
Research assistants: Dian-Jen Lin, Isabela Branca Gygax, Lara Gill (London College of Fashion)
Research workshop attendees, Design: Dian-Jen Lin, Hew Wang, Jo Cope, Siyang Meng, Voranida Rujekitnara, Yuqing Lai (London College of Fashion), Anderson Dalle Laste (London College of Communication)
Research workshop attendees, Psychology: Prof. Roberta Degnore (Fashion Institute of Technology NYC), David Adams, James Boag (London College of Fashion)
Research workshop attendees, Genetic Technology: Dr. Helen C. O’Neill, Ashley Campbell, Liane Stein, Rachel Ho (UCL)
Research workshop Photography: Celia Tang (London College of Fashion)
Research symposium chairs: Adam Peacock & Lynne Murray (Digital Anthropology Lab)
Research symposium, on Social Policy & Mental Health: Duncan Stephenson (Royal Society for Public Health)
Research symposium, on Genetic Technology: Prof. Joyce Harper (UCL), Dr. Helen C. O’Neill (UCL)
Research symposium, on Synthetic Biology & Speculative Bodies: Agatha Haines (Cognovo Research Lab)
Research symposium, on Plastic Surgery: Dr. Barry M. Jones (Royal College of Surgeons)
Research symposium, on Computer Science: Henrique Mathias (Feeld)

Videography, post-production, styling: Adam Peacock
Sound artist: Timothy Wang aka TWANG
Makeup artist: Tamara Dickson-Jones (London College of Fashion)
Production assistants: Celia Tang, Dian-Jen Lin, Isabela Branca Gygax, Lara Gill (London College of Fashion)
Technical equipment: Adam Grice, Alex Burgess, Dimitrios Coumados, James Montgomery, Kate Allen
Model casting: Adam Peacock
Model number one: Wing Yue Leung
Model number two: Hermione Fallow Callow
Model number three: Brendan Howley
Model number four: Thomas Wade Nichols
Model number five: John Kamau
Graphic illustrations drawings: Adam Peacock
Graphic illustrations printing: theprintspace
Research document production: Adam Peacock
Research document stand laser cutting: CutLaserCut

Exhibition design: Adam Peacock
Technical install: Fergus O’Connor, Manoj Mistry, Steven Legget
Exhibition & behind-the-Scenes photography & videography: Adam Peacock, Dian-Jen Lin, Isabela Branca Gygax, James Sanders, John Duff
Exhibition & behind-the-scenes photography & videography edit: Adam Peacock, Isabela Branca Gygax

With support from: Praksis Oslo, Arts Council Norway, City of Oslo; Science Gallery Dublin; Science Gallery Melbourne; Reproductive Science and Women’s Health MSc, University College London; Digital Anthropology Lab, University of the Arts London; Fashion Space Gallery, University of the Arts London

Adam Peacock (UK) is a London based artist and designer. Adam’s practice exists between architecture, consumer psychology, computer science, fine art and body design and seeks to interrogate the reality of human behaviors today. His work has been recognized with awards including the 2018 Robert Garland Treseder Fellowship at Melbourne School of Design, The University of Melbourne (2018), 2016 Designer in Residence at the Fashion Space Gallery at London College of Fashion (2016-17), and Artist in Residence at the Visible Futures Lab at the School of Visual Arts in NYC (2015-16).