Ask The Ants

Participatory Event


What can we learn from ants? To complement and celebrate The Ant-ic Museum, artists Feral Practice and Marcus Coates invite specialist in ant ecologies Dr Elva Robinson, and author of the natural world Charlotte Sleigh to discuss what ants can teach us about our human world.

Subverting a Gardeners’ Question Time format, the panel will answer questions from the audience about human society by drawing upon their specialist knowledge of ants. Seeing our entrenched issues or thorny problems through the unusual position of ant worlds opens up unexpected pathways of creative thinking for everyday life.

Submit your question in advance or bring it with you on the day. Questions can vary from the tiny to the vast, and from the political or societal to the deeply personal.


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This event is part of Ask the Wild, a collaborative project by Feral Practice and Marcus Coates, which offers fresh perspectives on personal, social, and political issues in human society by bringing the expert knowledge of the natural history disciplines to bear on everyday human problems and dilemmas. Previous events include Ask the Sea at Tate St Ives and Ask the Birds at Whitechapel Gallery.

Feral Practice works with human and nonhuman beings to create art projects that develop ethical and imaginative connection across species boundaries.

Marcus Coates is a performance artist, writer and film maker. His work continually draws parallels to examine how we perceive human-ness through imagined non-human realities.

Elva Robinson is Senior Lecturer in Ecology at York University and author of Wood Ant Ecology and Conservation (Cambridge University Press 2016). Elva conducts active research on the wood ants of the North York Moors, and we are delighted she can participate in this panel as our scientific expert.

Charlotte Sleigh is a researcher, writer and practitioner across the science humanities. Her research interests began in the history of biology, and have continued as such with an emphasis on animals. She is the author of Ant (Reaktion, 2003) and Six Legs Better: A Cultural History of Myrmecology (Johns Hopkins, 2007).

Additional information

– Disclaimer: Please note events can be subject to change at short notice.

– If you have any questions, please contact us on

Safe Visit

– You’ll find lots of places to clean your hands

– The venues are regularly cleaned

– Contactless payment is available

– Scarborough Museums Trust venues have been awarded the VisitEngland ‘We’re Good to Go’ industry standard mark, signifying that they adhere to government and public health guidance with regard to Covid-19.


Type Price
Tickets £5



Opening Hours

Sat 11:00 12:30

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