IMA Appoints Liz Nowell as Director News

IMA Appoints Liz Nowell as Director

27 March 2019

The Institute of Modern Art, Australia’s oldest independent contemporary art space, has appointed Liz Nowell as its new Director.

Ms Nowell is currently CEO of Adelaide’s ACE Open, a position she has held since that organisation’s founding in 2017. Prior to this, she was the Executive Director at the Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia and oversaw its amalgamation with the Australian Experimental Art Foundation to form ACE. She is the former studio manager of acclaimed Aboriginal artist Tony Albert, Co-Curator of SafARI and Curator at Hazelhurst Regional Gallery & Arts Centre.

She replaces Co-Directors Aileen Burns and Johan Lundh who have recently re-located to New Plymouth, New Zealand, to take the reins of the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery/Len Lye Centre. The Chair of the Board of the IMA, Rachel Crowley, said the Board was thrilled to have lured Liz to Brisbane for this important role.

“The IMA is an institution of international importance and standing so we were looking for a new Director who would ensure we maintained its exceptional reputation within the arts community whilst also helping us expand our influence, impact and audience. We believe Liz will do that and more for us over the coming years,” she said.

Ms Nowell said “The IMA is an organisation I have long admired, and I am thrilled to be appointed its next Director. Its reputation for presenting exemplary art from around the world is second to none, and I look forward to building on this impressive track record. I have always believed Queensland visual artists to be at the fore of contemporary practice in Australia, and I am excited to work closely with the community, staff and Board to ensure that both the IMA and local arts sector continues to flourish.”

Ms Nowell will commence at the IMA in mid June 2019.

The IMA was founded in 1974 by a small committee and members drawn from Brisbane’s Contemporary Arts Society. Founding members included Ray Hughes, Roy and Betty Churcher, Joy Schoenheimer, and Justice Derrington.

The IMA’s mission is to promote experimentation and research by diverse Australian and international artists and share their work with wide audiences through four interconnected streams: production, presentation, participation, and publishing. Our activities embed the international in the local Queensland context and engage the local internationally. To realise our mission, the IMA concentrates on commissioning new works by Australian and international artists at pivotal points of their practices and exhibiting these works in solo and group exhibitions.

The IMA is a registered charity and membership organisation supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, the Australian Government through Australia Council for the Arts, and the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian Federal, State, and Territory Governments, and many private sponsors and donors. The IMA is a founding member of Contemporary Art Organisations Australia.

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Photo: Sia Duff

The Institute of Modern Art acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land upon which the IMA now stands, the Jagera, Yuggera, Yugarapul, and Turrbal people. We offer our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the first artists of this country. In the spirit of allyship, the IMA will continue to work with First Nations people to celebrate, support, and present their immense past, present, and future contribution to artistic practice and cultural expression.