Part of our Making a Mark season

The onsite event takes place in the Headley Lecture Theatre and the online event via Zoom

Booking is essential

With artist Mike Perry

Artists were once in awe of nature and interested in the formal beauty of the landscape. But today, the threat of climate change and species extinction has changed the way artists engage with the natural world.

Mike Perry, who lives and works in Pembrokeshire, is a contemporary artist who examines interactions of landscapes, nature and industrial society, questioning the romantic mythology of Britain's wild places.

Perry’s work engages with how we look at and interpret our rural landscapes, challenging the idea of our national parks as areas of wilderness and natural beauty.

His work is distinct in the hyperlocal and apparently mundane nature of his subjects. Rather than epic, aerial vistas of glaciers or oil fields, Perry directs our attention to the overlooked hedgerow or the shell-incrusted plastic flip- flop found whilst beach-combing in West Wales. The drama of Perry's micro-studies are nonetheless global, holding a tension between their extraordinary aesthetic beauty and the damage inflicted upon nature by human activity.


Hawthorne, Mike Perry

Flailed Hawthorn, Wales 2020. A hawthorn tree 'trimmed' by a farmer, ruining it as a possible bird habitat but unwittingly unleashing its inherent beauty

Print of a a flip flop covered in shells and barnacles, by artist Mike Perry, featured in his Land / Sea exhibition

Flip Flop 29, Môr Plastig, 2015. A flip flop covered in crustaceans. Plastic objects carry marine life to new continents threatening native species

In this talk, Perry will discuss his artistic process and selected works he has made over the last 20 years. He will talk about the challenge of finding beauty and hope in a threatened landscape. At a time of ecological collapse and climate change, his work could hardly be more resonant.

About Mike Perry

Perry’s work has shown at The Venice Biennale, Royal Academy and National Museum Wales. Work from his Môr Plastig (Plastic Sea’) series was selected for FOUND at the Foundling Museum, curated by artist Cornelia Parker.
Find out more on Mike Perry’s website


Tickets for both the in-person and online talk are £15 each.

The in-person talk takes place in the Ashmolean's Headley Lecture Theatre and online via Zoom


If you have any questions, please email us at publicprogrammes@ashmus.ox.ac.uk