Professor Richard Noble

Staff details

PositionLecturer in Fine Art
Department Art
Email r.noble (
Phone+44 (0)20 7919 7648
Professor Richard Noble

Richard Noble's research interests are concentrated in three areas: the critical evaluation of contemporary art production, critical theory and the interrelation of art and politics. 

Richard's main area of scholarly interest is in visual art that engages in one way or another with the political; he is interested in the political impact of visual art and also the boundaries between aesthetics and politics. His interests are primarily philosophical, but over the course of the last four years he has written about a fairly wide range of artists as well as the theoretical problems associated with art and politics.

He is currently working on three projects: a reader for Whitechapel Projects/MIT Press on Utopias; an introduction to art theory; and an essay on the Spanish artist Cristina Iglesias.

Academic qualifications

  • 1980 B.A. (Politics) University of British Columbia
  • 1982 M.Sc. (Political Philosophy) London School of Economics
  • 1987 Ph.D. London School of Economics


Richard lectures in contemporary art history and criticism. He supervises undergraduate work and postgraduate dissertations in critical theory on art and politics aesthetics. 

Research Interests

Contemporary Art and Artists
Critical Theory
Art and Politics
Political Philosophy


Book Section

The Utopian Body
Noble, Richard. 2007. The Utopian Body. In: Michael Mack, ed. Antony Gormley. Steidl/Mack, pp. 11-51. ISBN 9783865210296

Imagining the Political: Some Provisional Thoughts on Art and Politics
Noble, Richard. 2005. Imagining the Political: Some Provisional Thoughts on Art and Politics. In: , ed. The Showroom Annual 2003/04. London: The Showroom. ISBN 978-0954236236

The Meaning of What Remains
Noble, Richard. 2005. The Meaning of What Remains. In: Eckhard Schneider, ed. Rachel Whiteread: Walls, Doors, Floors and Stairs. Kunsthaus Bregenz, pp. 66-94. ISBN 388375935X

‘Tierra de pájaros / Birdland’
Noble, Richard. 2003. ‘Tierra de pájaros / Birdland’. In: , ed. Hannah Collins. La calle/The Street. Malaga: CAC Málaga. ISBN 978-8436159073

An Anthropoetics of Space: Antony Gormleys Field
Noble, Richard; Fang, H.; Gormley, Antony and Haier, Z.. 2003. An Anthropoetics of Space: Antony Gormleys Field. In: R. Riley, ed. Asian Field. British Council, pp. 190-201. ISBN 0863555101

‘Access for All, Freedom for the Few’
Noble, Richard. 2000. ‘Access for All, Freedom for the Few’. In: , ed. Art for All?: Their Policies and Our Culture. London: Peer. ISBN 978-0953977208

‘The Phenomenology of Play’
Noble, Richard and Blazwick, Iwona. 1999. ‘The Phenomenology of Play’. In: , ed. Annie Ratti. Como and Milan: Centre for Contemporary Art.

‘Freedom and Containment’
Noble, Richard. 1995. ‘Freedom and Containment’. In: , ed. Jana Sterbak: Velleitas. Barcelona: Fundacio Antoni Tapies. ISBN 978-8488786067


Art Since 1900 : A Review Essay
Noble, Richard. 2005. Art Since 1900 : A Review Essay. Art Monthly, ISSN 0142-6702

Start Making Sense
Noble, Richard. 2004. Start Making Sense. catalogue essay for Michael Craig-Martin: Surfacing,

‘The Aesthetics of Contingency’
Noble, Richard. 2004. ‘The Aesthetics of Contingency’. catalogue of David Batchelor: Shiny/Dirty,

Mona Hatoum: A Living Between
Noble, Richard. 2002. Mona Hatoum: A Living Between. Parachute, 4(108), pp. 178-191. ISSN 03187020

Exhibition Catalogue

The lure of utopia
Noble, Richard. 2009. The lure of utopia.