Metamorphosis, 20 x24 inches, mixed media on board.
A Lifetime Spent in Study of the Natural World
Perry grew up in rural Pennsylvania. She was 5 years old and several miles upwind when the nuclear reactor at Three
Mile Island malfunctioned on March 28, 1979. Some of her memories of the event had slipped away until one day when a
girl a few grades ahead of her died from lymphoma.
A few years later more of her peers had died from other complications. In a lawsuit filed against the Nuclear Regulatory
Board, however, radiation exposure was thrown out because of a lack of scientific evidence. It was not until 1996 that a
study by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill reevaluated the data, finding radiation fallout had an impact on
“These experiences changed my perceptions at an early age and caused me to continually question our society’s actions
in regard to the environment,” Perry wrote in her graduate thesis.
A graduate of East Carolina University, where she earned a Master of Fine Arts, Perry is an art instructor at Cape Fear
Community College. She integrates images into her art and teaching to communicate broader messages effectively.
“It shouldn’t be surprising for anyone to learn I’m a visual person,” she jokes.
Though she enjoys coordinating shows at the CFCC gallery, producing and selling art became secondary after she had
her son. Now that he is eight and needs less attention, she is looking forward to spending more time in the studio at her
“The Cape Fear region has so much to offer,” Perry says. “Of course, everyone loves the beaches and the river for their
natural beauty, but I think people overlook some of the little things.”
WBM july 2020