Ian Alden Russell is a contemporary art curator. Currently the Curator of Brown University’s David Winton Bell Gallery, he was previously Assistant Professor of Contemporary Art and Curatorial Practice at Koç University in Istanbul, Turkey. His curatorial practice and critical writings address historical materialism, the politics of images, institutional discrimination, political ecology, new media, and socially engaged practice.
Recent projects include Mark Dion’s Irish premiere Against the Current at Ormston House in Limerick; Artpace San Antonio’s 2015 International-Artist-in-Residence program; contributions to the Safina Radio Project at the 56th Venice Biennale; the Hong Kong Umbrella Festival responding to the 2014 Hong Kong Demonstrations; guest researcher for “Socially Engaged Art Practices and Education in Contemporary Discourse” at UNIDEE, Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto; and An Innocent City in Istanbul, Turkey responding to Orhan Pamuk’s Museum of Innocence. Upcoming projects include exhibitions of Kurdish-Turkish artist Fatma Bucak, Pierre Huyghe’s film Untitled/Human Mask, Houston-based artist Gabriel Martinez, and a special meeting of the curatorial team of Don’t Follow the Wind at Brown University to discuss the project’s response to the Fukushima nuclear disaster.
A guest critic at the Rhode Island School of Design and the School of Visual Art, New York, he has been invited to speak at the Academy of Fine Arts in Helsinki, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Columbia University, Contemporary Istanbul, Fudan University in Shanghai, Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts, Harvard University, New York University, Stanford University, University of Cambridge, University of Shanghai, and Williams College. His writings have been published by Cambridge University Press, Cittadellarte, deCordova Museum & Sculpture Park, Lars Muller Publishers, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Oxford University Press, Springer-Kluwer, and Yapı Kredi Publishers.
Born in Richmond, Virginia and educated in Ireland, he holds a Ph.D in History from Trinity College Dublin and has held fellowships at Brown University, University of Notre Dame, and University College Dublin. He currently lives in Providence, Rhode Island.