Mali Morris was born in North Wales and studied Fine Art at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (BA) and the University of Reading (MFA).

Her first major solo exhibitions were at the Serpentine Summer Show 3, London, 1977, and the Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, 1979. She has shown extensively since then in over thirty-five solo shows, and many group exhibitions: John Moores at the Walker in Liverpool, and in London at the Whitechapel Gallery, Serpentine Gallery, Hayward Gallery, and the Barbican, as well as a number overseas.  Please see News section for a list of group shows since 2010.

There have been three solo shows in Tokyo, 2000, 2004 and 2005, and two in New York, 2005 and 2007. Angel Row Gallery Nottingham organized a touring show in 2002-3. Poussin Gallery, London, showed Mali Morris: Work From Four Decades in 2005 and Mali Morris: New Paintings in 2008. Mali Morris: Paintings on Canvas and Paper was in the Sir Hugh Casson Room for Friends, Royal Academy, London, 2010, then at The Cut, Halesworth, 2011, and Mostyn Gallery, Llandudno, 2012. Back to Front, was at the Eagle Gallery London, in 2012. Three shows with Stephen Lewis were Pressure Drop and Hoopla, at Berwick-upon-Tweed, in 2012, Odelay and Wishpool, at Kapil Jarawala, London, in 2014 and PIER, at Linden Hall Studio, Deal, in 2017. Her most recent solo shows were at FOLD Gallery, London, 2017 and Royal Academy, London, March - August 2019.

She takes part annually in Open Studios at APT, London, and Royal Academy Summer Exhibitions, London.

Her work is in private and public collections worldwide, including the Arts Council England, British Council, Contemporary Arts Society, Government Art Collection, Pallant House, Royal Collection, and the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester. In May 2007 she was a prizewinner at Creekside Open X 2, and was awarded the Sunny Dupree Prize at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition 2008. She was Chair of the selection panel for Jerwood Contemporary Painters in 2009, and a Selector/Mentor for Jerwood Painting Fellowships, 2012-13. In 2014 she was a selector for John Moores Painting Prize China, in Shanghai. She was a Trustee of Poetry London, 2013 - 2019.

Mali Morris has taught and examined at many Departments of Fine Art, including the Royal College of Art, Slade School of Art, University of Reading, Newcastle University and Chelsea College of Art and Design, University of the Arts, London, where she was Senior Lecturer in Painting from 1991-2005.

In March 2010 she was elected as a Member of the Royal Academy of Arts, and from Oct 2019 - Oct 2020 was Professor of Painting at RA Schools.