Vale John Nixon, former IMA Director News

Vale John Nixon, former IMA Director

19 August 2020

The IMA is saddened to learn of the passing of influential conceptual artist and our former Director John Nixon. John was a seminal figure in Australian contemporary art, and has exhibited numerous times at the IMA over the past forty five years, including in the landmark exhibition, Recession Art and Other Strategies, 1985. Under his Directorship at the IMA, between 1980 and 1981, John presented an expansive program of ground-breaking solo exhibitions, which afforded artists the opportunity to speak using their own voice. His ambition for contemporary art continues to inform the IMA to this very day, and his legacy will not be forgotten.

We extend our heartfelt sympathies to his partner Sue Cramer and daughter Emma, his family, friends, and colleagues.

About John Nixon
Born Sydney, Australia 1949
Died Melbourne, Australia 2020

John Nixon was a seminal figure in contemporary Australian abstraction. Since 1968, his work was dedicated to the on-going experimentation, analysis, and development of radical modernism, minimalism, the monochrome, constructivism, non-objective art and the readymade; which are key reference points in his work. Experimental Painting Workshop (EPW) which began in 1978, forms the basis of Nixon’s rigorous and long-standing intellectual investigation into the making of art, which over time has expanded to encompass not only painting, but collage, photography, video, dance and experimental music performance.

Nixon exhibited regularly and widely throughout his career. He has held more than 70 solo exhibitions since 2001, including the Museum Gegenstandsfreier Kunst Otterndorf, Otterndorf and the Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland. He represented Australia at Documenta 7, Kassel, Germany in 1982.

Nixon’s works are held in every major state museum collection in Australia, and selected international public collections include: Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York;  Museum Sztuki, Lodz; Foire National d’Art Contemporain, Paris; Stiftung fur Konkrete Kunst, Reutlingen; The Artists Museum, Lodz; Herning Kunstmuseumm, Denmark; Daimler Chrysler Collection, Berlin; Kunstmuseum Esberg, Denmark; Espace d’Art Contemporain, Demigny; and National Gallery of Contemporary Art, Seoul.

Interview with John Nixon, 1980.