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Words from the Wild: the Nature of Poetry

Words from the Wild: the Nature of Poetry


Words from the Wild: The Nature of Poetry explores different forms of poetry, all of which respond to the natural world. The exhibition expands on what we might think of as a poem, to include films, textile banners, sculptures in beeswax, and prints made from 'listening' to trees. It brings together pieces by award-winning and internationally exhibited eco-poets and language artists, including J. R. Carpenter, Susan Johanknecht and Katharine Meynell, Camilla Nelson and Redell Olsen, along with works by an emerging new generation. 

Eco-poetry is concerned with closely observing, being with and gathering from the more-than-human world; exploring the many ways that language connects with the realms of plants and fungi, animals, birds and insects, and the elemental and microbial processes of water, air, soil, weather. 

This exhibition has been curated by Royal Holloway and TECHNE researchers Caroline Harris, Briony Hughes and Gareth Hughes, in collaboration with the Royal Holloway Culture team.


Explore the exhibition catalogue on Shorthand here: 



This exhibition is open from 17 January 2024 - 24 March 2024 in the Davison Building Exhibition Space.

Exhibition Events

Join the Words from the Wild team for a screening of a selection of films from the Words from the Wild exhibition alongside other selected video poems. 

The Words and Worlds symposium on 22 March 2024 will explore the possibilities of language as an intermediary between humans, plants, animals, and other nonhuman beings. This event responds to the themes of the Words from the Wild exhibition. Professor Simon Morris (Leeds School of Art; Inscription Journal) is confirmed as a keynote speaker.

If you would like to present your research or practice, we are inviting papers (15 minutes), lightning talks and readings/showings of creative practice on subjects including multi-sensory poetics, translation, language loss and diversity. Please send an abstract/proposal of 250 words and a short bio to by Friday 9 February 2024, or email for the full call for papers.

Join the Words from the Wild team for an evening of poetry readings in the Exhibition Space. Timings to be confirmed.

Find out how to visit below:

The exhibition is open every day from 10am-6pm. 

The exhibition is located in the Exhibition Space in the Emily Wilding Davison Building on our Egham campus. 

You will find the exhibition space in the building atrium, look out for the exhibition window sticker.


The address is:

Emily Wilding Davison Building

Royal Holloway


TW20 0EX

Access to the exhibition space is step-free. Benches are located throughout the exhibition for visitor use. All media content is subtitled.

Toilet facilities are located nearby to the exhibition space next to the entrance to Cafe on the Square. 

Whilst you are on campus, why not explore our heritage services?

The Picture Gallery is open to the public from 10am-3pm on Wednesdays in terms 1 and 2.

Archive appointments can be booked with our Archivist on Tuesdays and Thursdays by emailing

Art store appointments can be booked with our Art Collections team all week by emailing

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