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Work on Walls

The Herbert Art Gallery & Museum invited eight contemporary artists to create work inspired by our collections.

FREE | Drop in

The exhibition is an expanded and enriched version of our 2019 exhibition, Work on Windows, where we asked artists to paint on our building’s windows during lockdown. All the artwork in this exhibition has been hand drawn, painted, sprayed, or stuck onto the walls of our gallery. 

The eight artists we have commissioned come from varied backgrounds. Their styles feature delicate linework, unique illustrations, fantastical creatures, repeating patterns and more. The inspiration for the artworks derives from the large and diverse collections cared for at the Herbert and bring an exciting new perspective to familiar objects.


Birmingham based Annatomix is a self-trained visual artist. She has spent the past 10 years cultivating an instantly recognisable style that focuses heavily on wildlife. 

Born out of a natural leaning towards traditional graphic design and a keen interest in graffiti, she has developed a wide and varied practice through experimentation. She chooses not to restrict herself to any medium and her constantly evolving geometric animals can be found carved in wood, sculpted in clay and bounding across walls from Mexico to India. 

Annatomix’s work is centred around our connection with the natural world, or rather our detachment from it. She uses her robotic, aesthetically pleasing creatures to question how we interact with other species, our self-imposed superiority, our desire to ‘play god’ and why we move in cycles of worship and destruction of the world around us.


Phill Blake is a multidisciplinary creative originally from Coventry, now living in the Oxfordshire countryside. His work includes graffiti and street art, graphic design, illustration, fine art, textiles and surface pattern design and interior and exterior mural paintings. Phill takes his inspiration from nature as well as our rich history of art and design, in particular the arts and crafts movement, art nouveau and gothic revival. 

Having a background in street art and also studying design and then illustration at Coventry University has led Phill to seek to blur the lines between art and design. His interest in geometry and more recently, ornamental repeat pattern work, has allowed him to further explore the idea of the balance between nature and culture, and order and chaos, both literally and metaphorically. The flowers and plants in his work are representative of nature or chaos and the structure of the pattern represents culture or order, as it attempts to constrain nature.  

Phill has created a body of work in a variety of mediums.  He is always curious to develop his techniques and use of mediums and learning is a big part of his practice.


Mim (Jemima Graham) is an artist actively involved in community-based creative practices. Her recent progression into Landscape Architecture has inspired her to create artistic and playful spaces across communities in the West Midlands.

Alongside her team Glue Collective, a cooperative based in Birmingham, Mim seeks to address current and emerging, social, environmental and economic challenges through art and nature. This primarily involves project-based work and installations. She is also heavily influenced by the concept of play through her extensive experience as a professional play practitioner.


Roo has a crew. 
It consists of mostly animals, which vary in mood and personality. 
Some are friendly and others will eat you.

Focusing on the Herbert's large collection of taxidermy from around the world, Roo has used the space to celebrate their love of animals:
'It might be an unusual choice to make as a vegan, but after learning it’s now thankfully illegal to kill an animal for the purpose of taxidermy in the UK, I saw an opportunity to learn more about these beautiful animals and hopefully increase other people’s interest in them, by showcasing and sharing knowledge of their awesomeness.' - Roo


Roots is a Birmingham based freelance illustrator and street artist. Her designs blend of whimsical and relatable characters, 90’s pop culture and the weird and wonderful world of nature.

With a degree in visual communication, specialising in iIllustration, and a background in graphic design, Roots works across a variety of mediums, tailoring her creations to suit each brief. She loves to bring her bold creative style to live art events, workshops, competitions, and exhibitions.  


Born with ginger hair and an attitude, he hit the school system in a blur - kicking, dragging, screaming...
Carl was destined for good things.
Wonderful things. Like the next six years of hard labour in a factory.

Desperate to get the dark, oogly things out of his head, Carl enrolled in art college, where they started leaping out of his skull and spilling onto paper or anything else they could put in front of him. 

After college he landed a job with the BBC's graphic design studio, designing title sequences and motion graphics for programmes such as Crimewatch, Gardeners World, Countryfile, The Really Useful Show and Top Gear. 

Carl is now a freelance designer, illustrator, and artist. 


Luke Thrush and Anna Davies met in 2019 and began doodling on windows together for fun. Soon they werebefore being approached for projects to add artwork onto the windows of high street businesses.

Under the title of Window Artists, they aim to create and install designs that develop from more of an illustrative approach, approach, using their art to represent a business’ spirit or characterethos. After winning an open commission for a mural in Birmingham city centre in 2020, they have expanded to create large-scale exterior and interior works that bring joy, intrigue and connection to that interact with the communities within which the works are displayed. 

 They take their inspiration from their love of architecture, neglected space, and the meeting intersection of the natural and urban landscapes.  This often leads to a stylised combination of bold geometric shapes paired with intricate and delicate penmanship.   

Public engagement is a priority when producing a design, with Window Artists often opting for puzzle-like interaction that requires much more than just a passing glance.