Professor Louis Nixon

School: School of Art and Architecture
Position: Associate Dean Research


Louis Nixon graduated from the Slade in 1989. He founded the collective Space Explorations in 1990 and, as artist and curator, participated in their large-scale interventions in response to specific sites. Space Explorations' archive and publications were included in Life / Live, Musée D'art Moderne, Paris, 1996 and Century City Tate Modern, London, 2000. Since 2001 his practice has been independent and his work exhibited widely. Selected solo exhibitions include Rolling Barrel (Station, Bristol, UK, 2001); Flag, (Economist Plaza, London. video and sculpture commissioned by the Contemporary Arts Society, 2005); Everywhere, Nowhere (atelier 25, Italy, 2005); and Across the Border (dispari&dispari project, Italy, 2010).

Nixon was awarded a Chinese government commendation for the Shanghai World Expo project (2007). In 2009, he was subsequently invited and funded by Shanghai's Cultural Development Department (SCDD) to lead, develop and curate the public art project, Come On. The project sought to change the discourse around public art in Shanghai by involving the local Caoyang community in restoring and reactivating their public square for social and artistic use, culminating in a series of five sculptural interventions, live performances, publications and films.

A developing research theme which equates with the physical and political components of landscape is encapsulated in the idea of borders. Louis Nixon's work traces borders, most often making journeys by car and travelling the boundary of a landscape, particular site or territory where a route of circumvention may be dictated for geographical or political reasons. From within the car's private space using fixed mounted cameras, he tracks a journey, making video footage of the exterior surround. The footage is then subsequently combined with sculptural and painting work re-configured from it, in multi-media installations such as 1414km commissioned and funded by dispari&dispari for Nixon's solo exhibition (2010) and Island for his Southard Reid exhibition (2012).

Between 2008-2010 Nixon produced Rocks and Stones, a series of 30 paintings forwarding a research agenda that engages with the inherently political nature of travel. Half the paintings are of mountainous landscapes titled after global border crossings. The other 15 are of gemstones and minerals named after disputed global mining sites (i.e. Taxaco, Catoca, Acari) that reference objects of value that the landscapes may contain. Selected works from this series have featured in recent group exhibitions: Vette 2010 at Palazzo Frisacco, Tolmezzo, Italy; and the Royal Academy Summer Show (2012); among others.

In addition to his current role as Head of School of Fine Art Kingston University, Nixon is also research degree supervisor and a peer reviewer for the AHRC.

Related links

Teaching areas & responsibilities

2007 – Head of Fine Art

Postgraduate Research

Taught Postgraduate : MA Art and Space, MA European Art Practice, MA Fine Art and Higher Education.

Undergraduate: BA Fine Art

Professional activity

  • 2010 - presentAHRC peer reviewer

Educational and professional qualifications

  • 1989Post-Graduate Sculpture Slade School, University College, University of London
  • 1987BA (Hons) Fine Art Chelsea School of Art, London

Conferences & events

2011 Conference:
WHERE IN ART EDUCATION DOES THE EDUCATION TAKE PLACE? Panelist with John Timberlake (Middlesex); John Aiken (Slade);Mo Throp (Chelsea); Martin Newth (Camberwell); Jane Lee (Central Saint Martins).

London Arts Board, Awards to Individual Artists (2000).
British Council Travel grants to Chile (1997), Belgrade (2002 and 2004). Poland (2005 and 2006), Armenia (2006).
Boise Travel Scholarship 1989 (To study in Rome).
British Institution Fund 1988 (Awarded by the Royal Academy School).
Robert Ross Scholarship 1988 (Awarded by the Slade, UCL).


Selected Group Exhibitions
2010 Cabin:Codex ,100 artists books selected from the collection of Centre for Artists' Books at Visual Research Centre, DJCAD. Including: Sol Lewitt Richard Hamilton, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Richard Long, Hans Waanders, David Shrigley, Lawrence Weiner.

2010 Vette, Palazzo Frisacco Tolmezzo. Italy.

2006 Armenia Biennial, Gumry, Armenia. With Philip Lia, Sarah Jones, Louise Short. Video Installation

2006 Out-Or, Poznan, Poland. Video Installation. (+ Catalogue).

2005 Art Caucasus, Tbilisi, Georgia, October 2005 With Jeremy Deller, Richard Wentworth. Catalogue. Flag and Film.

2005 Kontakt-Kontext, Inner Spaces, Poznan, Poland. Video Installation.

2005 Frankly, ON gallery Poznan Poland (+ Catalogue) Video Installation.

2005 International Exhibition of Artists Flags, Centre of Visual Culture, Novi Sad, Serbia and Montenegro. Flag.

2004 Values, 11th Biennial of Visual Arts. 'Iglesia Universal en plein air' collaboration with ArtLab. Pancevo. Serbia. 2004. (Catalogue) other British artists Mark Wallinger, Jeremy Deller. Daniel Burren. Sculpture.

2004 Un Cuscino Per Sognare, Parco Esposizioni Novegro. Milano. Italy. With Franko B, Yoko Ono, and Un Cuscino Per Sognare, Kultfabrik Munich Germany. With Yoko Ono, Franko B, Philip Corner. Film. (+ Catalogue)

2003 Don't start from the good old things but the bad new ones, Whitechapel Project Space. London.

2003 Isonerv, 168 Pitfield Street. London.

2002 Crossings, 10th Biennial of Visual Arts. Belgrade. Serbia. (Catalogue)

2001 Don't go to Work, Rhodes and Mann. London. Kinetic Sculpture.

2001 Station to Station, Spacex. Exeter. Video.

2000 Von Gimborn Arboretum, Utrecht. Netherlands. With Keith Wilson, Herman De Vries. (+Catalogue). Installation.

2000 Century City, Tate Modern, London. Space Explorations (Archive and Publications)

Research groups & programmes

Research supervision


Number of items: 15.


Nixon, Louis [Artist] (2016) Moving Rock. (Sculpture made from jesmonite and computer control system). 3m x 2.5m.

Nixon, Louis [Artist] (2010) 1414 km. (Experimental film and land art). Sculpture installation containing two films.

Nixon, Louis [Artist] (2010) Rocks and stones. (Paintings). 640 x 540 x 20mm. 30 paintings.

Cullinan, C., Richards, J. and Nixon, L. (2004) Iglesia universal en plein air. (Installation). 6 x 6 x 3 m.

Nixon, Louis and Sandbach, David (2002) Rotating barrels. (Installation). Pancevo, Serbia,


Nixon, Louis (2008) Art car boot fair 2008. KIOSK(2), pp. 12-15. ISSN (print) 1755-9626


Nixon, Louis (2002) Rolling barrel. UK : Space Explorations. 100p. ISBN 0953168906


Nixon, Louis [Artist] (2012) Island. .

Nixon, Louis [Curator of an exhibition] (2009) Come on. .

Nixon, Louis (2005) Everywhere nowhere. Everywhere Nowhere. , 22 Jan - 27 Feb 2005 , Reggio Emilia, Italy.

Nixon, Louis (2005) Flag. , 14 Sep - 16 Oct 2005 , London, UK.

Nixon, Louis [Artist] (2000) Tuin Van Verbeelding (Garden of imagination). Tuin Van Verbeelding (Garden of Imagination). , 13 May - 15 Oct 2000 , Von Gimborn Arboretum, Botanische Tuinen Universiteit, Utrecht, Holland.

Nixon, Louis [Curator of an exhibition] (1999) Tourist. Tourist: Space explorations. , September 1999 , Chisendale Road, London E8.

Nixon, Louis [Artist] and Heber-Percy, Paul [Curator of an exhibition] (1999) Furniture. Furniture. , 9 Feb - 13 Mar 1999 , Richard Salmon Gallery, Edwardes Square Studios, London.

Nixon, Louis [Artist] (1996) High rise. High Rise. , 3 May - 2 Jun 1996 , 110 Euston Road, London, NW1.

This list was generated on Mon Jun 26 04:30:24 2017 BST.
Installation view 'Gemstones' paintings, Dispari&Dispari, Reggio Emilia, Italy, 27 April - 30 May 2010
Installation view '1414km' (2010)
Installation view 'Island', Southard Reid, London, U.K., 21 March - 28 April 2012