Lubaina Himid

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Lubaina Himid
Born 1954 (age 62–63)
Zanzibar, Tanzania

Lubaina Himid MBE[1] (born 1954 in Zanzibar, Tanzania[2]) is a contemporary African artist and Professor of Contemporary Art at the University of Central Lancashire in the north west of England.[3][4] Her art focuses on themes of cultural history and reclaiming identities.[5] She was one of the first artists involved in the Black Art movement in the 1980s[5] and continues to create activist art which is shown in galleries in Britain, as well as worldwide.[3] Himid was appointed MBE in June 2010 for "services to Black Women's Art".[1]


Himid was born in Zanzibar, Tanzania, in 1954 and moved to Britain with her mother, a textile designer,[6] following the death of her father when she was just four months old.[7] She attended the Wimbledon College of Art, where she studied Theatre Design, obtaining her B.A. in 1976.[8] She received her Master's degree in Cultural History from the Royal College of Art in London in 1984.[8][2] She is represented by Hollybush Gardens gallery in Clerkenwell, London.[9]


  • Bone in the China: success to the Africa Trade (installation, c. 1985)
  • Revenge: a masque in five tableaux (multipart installation, 1991–92)
  • Zanzibar (series of paintings, 1999)
  • Plan B (series of paintings, 1999–2000)
  • Swallow Hard: the Lancaster Dinner Service (painted ceramics, 2007)
  • Negative Positives (series of graphic works, 2007– )
  • Kangas (associated works on paper etc, various dates)
  • Le Rodeur (series of paintings, 2016)

Solo exhibitions[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Reviewing an updated version of Himid's 2004 work "Naming the Money" for The Daily Telegraph in February 2017, Louisa Buck noted that,

"Himid's work has long been concerned with black creativity, history and identity and this animated throng represents the Africans who were brought to Europe as slave servants. There are drummers, dog trainers, dancers, potters, cobblers, gardeners and players of the viola da gamba, all decked out in vivid versions of 17th century costume. Labels on their backs identify each individual, giving both their original African names and occupations as well those imposed by their new European owners, and these poignant texts also form part of an evocative soundtrack, interspersed with snatches of Cuban, Irish, Jewish and African music."[4]


Board memberships[edit]

Himid has held positions on many boards and panels. She is on the board of trustees for the Lowry Arts Centre Manchester. Additionally, she is a board member for Arts Council England Visual Arts, Creative Partnerships East Lancs and Arts Council England North West. Previous board memberships include Matt's Gallery, London (2002–05), and Tate Liverpool Council (2000, 2005). From 1985 until 1987 Himid was on the Greater London Arts Association Visual Arts Panel.


In 2017 Himid was nominated for the Turner Prize. This makes her the oldest person (as of May 2017) to be nominated for the prize since the rules changed to allow nominations of artists over the age of 50.[11]


  1. ^ a b "The London Gazette of Friday 11 June 2010 Supplement No 1". The London Gazette (59446). London. 12 June 2010. p. 17. Retrieved 3 May 2017. 
  2. ^ a b "Biography for Lubaina Himid". Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery. 
  3. ^ a b Biography; Full CV. Lubaina Himid website. Archived 2015-04-02 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ a b Buck, Louisa (17 February 2017). "Lubaina Himid: a trio of UK shows shines a light on the under-appreciated hero of black British art". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 3 May 2017. 
  5. ^ a b "Lubaina Himid", Northern Art Prize. Archived 2011-01-27 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ Spence, Rachel (20 January 2017). "British artist Lubaina Himid rides a wave of overdue recognition". Financial Times. London. Retrieved 4 May 2017. (Subscription required (help)). 
  7. ^ Judah, Hettie (18 January 2017). "President with a torpedo in his crotch: how the works of Lubaina Himid speak to Trump times". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 3 May 2017. 
  8. ^ a b "Prof. Lubaina Himid, MBE: Professor of Contemporary Art". University of Central Lancashire. Retrieved 4 May 2017. 
  9. ^ Lubaina Himid at Hollybush Gardens.
  10. ^ "Lubaina Himid: Invisible Strategies | 21 January — 30 April 2017", Modern Art Oxford.
  11. ^ "Turner Prize: Black painting pioneers break award age barrier". BBC News Online. BBC. 3 May 2017. Retrieved 3 May 2017. 

External links[edit]