Marion Coutts

Staff details

Position Reader
Department Art
Email m.coutts (
Phone +44 (0)20 7717 2228
Marion Coutts

Marion Coutts is an artist and writer. She works with a range of material forms: sculpture, digital video, drawing and photography. Her practice is concerned with the physicality of the image; artwork and personal encounter; slippage and loss. Her first book, The Iceberg won the Wellcome Book Prize, 2015. She is currently a Senior Lecturer on BA Fine Art and History of Art at Goldsmiths.

She has held solo exhibitions at Tintype, London: Yorkshire Sculpture Park; Chisenhale Gallery, London; Angel Row, Nottingham; Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool; The Wellcome Collection, London; Project Gallery, Dublin and Foksal Gallery, Warsaw. Other venues that have hosted her work include Helsinki Kunsthalle: RIBA, London; Whitstable Biennial; Gasworks, London and Arnolfini, Bristol.

In 2011 her practice shifted to include writing. The Iceberg is an account of a family unit under assault: an investigation into time, language, belonging and the nature of embodiment. “Reading it, you have the sense of something truly unique being brought into the world- it stays with you for a long time after.” Bill Bryson, Wellcome Prize Citation. The Iceberg was published in the UK in 2014, the US in 2016 and mainland China in 2017.

Academic qualifications

  • Edinburgh College of Art, BA Fine Art, 1982-1986
  • State School for the Arts, Wroclaw, Poland, British Council Scholarship, 1989-90  


Marion has been a lecturer on BA Fine Art & History of Art at Goldsmiths since 2007. She served as Acting Course Leader on the programme in 2012 and again in 2014. She is currently external examiner at London Met, 2018-2020. Prior to lecturing at Goldsmiths, she has been a senior visiting lecturer at Norwich School of Art and Design, 2004-2005, Associate Lecturer, BA Fine Art, University of the Arts, 2005-2010 and visiting tutor at City and Guilds of London Art School 2002-2003.

Professional projects

Projects in 2018 include the Islands Arts Writing Residency, Fogo Island, Newfoundland, with Art Metropole, Toronto.
In 2018-19 she will hold a Visiting Research Fellowship at the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds.
In 2016 she was a resident writer at Cove Park in Scotland. She writes on Art for 1843 magazine/ Economist online. 

Marion has held a number of Fellowships. She was a Senior Research Fellow at Norwich School of Art and Design, 2007-09, the Kettle’s Yard Fellow at St John’s College, Cambridge in 2003 and the Momart Fellow at Tate Liverpool in 2001. In 1999, she spent six months as a Rome Scholar at The British School at Rome.

Film commissions include, Twenty-six Things, 2008, Wellcome Collection: Everglade, 2003, Film and Video Umbrella and No Evil Star, 2002, Locus+. Her work has been screened at Artprojx Cinema at the SVA Theatre, New York and Rome Film Festival, UK focus.

Following the publication of her book. Marion has appeared on a number of public talks and panels, including Tintype, with Denise Riley; Hay Festival, with Rosie Boycott; Faclan, Stornoway, with Philip Hoare and Amy Liptrot; RSA, with Helen MacDonald; Charleston Festival, with Max Porter; LSE Literary Festival, with Ali Smith; Libreria, with Andrew Solomon, and Edinburgh Book Festival, with Erwin Mortier.

Public discourse around her book crosses into the area of Medical Humanities. Conferences include, EMPATHIES: Empathy and Ethics at the End of Life, University of Basel, Switzerland, 2016, The Chronic: Temporality, Care and Health Research, Symposium, 2016; Modernism’s Chronic Conditions, Temporality, Medicine and Disorders of the Self: University of Exeter, 2015; Medicine Unboxed: Cheltenham, 2015.

Featured publications


  • The Iceberg, Winner of the Wellcome Book Prize 2015
    Published by Atlantic Books 2014, hardback 294 pp. ISBN 978-1782393504, paperback ISBN 978 17823934528
    Shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize for non-fiction 2014; the Costa Biography Award 2015; the Pol Roger Duff Cooper Award 2015. Longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award 2014
    Finalist in the National Book Critics Circle Awards of America 2017
    Mandarin edition 2015: Spanish edition 2016: US edition 2016: Audible Audiobook 2016: simplified Chinese edition 2017.
  • English Graphic, Tom Lubbock. Editor, Marion Coutts with an introduction by Jamie McKendrick.
    Published by Frances Lincoln: hardback, 208 pp. ISBN 978-0-71123 370-6
  • Until Further Notice, I am Alive. Tom Lubbock, Tom. Editors, Marion Coutts and Bella Lacey. Introduction by Marion Coutts.
    Published by Granta: hardback, 160pp. ISBN 978-1-84708-531-3

Printed Matter

  • Marion Coutts. Zine: publication, limited edition of 300, published to accompany the exhibition, Aiming or Hitting, Tintype, London 2017

Shows / Exhibitions

  • Marion Coutts. Aiming or Hitting, Tintype, London, 2017

Fellowships / Residencies

  • Marion Coutts, The Islands Arts Writing Residency, Fogo Island, Newfoundland with Artspace Gibralter Point, Toronto. 2018
  • Marion Coutts. Cove Park Literature Residency. 2016


Publications and research outputs


Coutts, Marion. 2006. Ein Bolzplatz fur die Kunst/ Ball of Fame, Young International Artists. In: "Ein Bolzplatz fur die Kunst/ Ball of Fame, Young International Artists", ex-Vitra Design Museum, Berlin, Germany.

Coutts, Marion. 2005. Money. In: "Money", The Tabernacle Trust, Powis Square, 1/15/2005 - 2/26/2005.

Coutts, Marion. 2003. Mountain. In: "Mountain", Kettles Yard, 9/27/2003 - 11/2/2003.

Coutts, Marion. 2003. Everglade. In: "Everglade", Firstsite, The Minories: 7 June-3 August 2003 Angel Row Gallery: 14 Jan-28 Feb 2004 2 Princelet St: 1 May-16 May 2004, 6/7/2003 - 5/16/2004.

Coutts, Marion. 2002. Cult. In: "Cult", Chisenhale Gallery, United Kingdom, 9/4/2002 - 10/13/2002.

Leventon, Rosie and Coutts, Marion. 1991. Rosie Leventon and Marion Coutts: Installation. sculpture. works on paper. In: "Rosie Leventon and Marion Coutts: Installation. sculpture. works on paper", Oriel Gallery and Leeds Polytechnic Gallery, United Kingdom.

Coutts, Marion. 1988. 4th International Triennial of Drawing. In: "4th International Triennial of Drawing", Wroclaw, Poland.

Exhibition Catalogue

Coutts, Marion. 2017. Zine.

Conference or Workshop Item

Coutts, Marion. 2019. 'Sculpture as Fieldwork'. In: Sculpture as Fieldwork. Henry Moore Lecture Theatre, Leeds Art Gallery, United Kingdom 6 July 2019.

Art Object

Coutts, Marion. 2020. The Spiritual Exercises.

Coutts, Marion. 2008. Twenty Six Things.


Coutts, Marion. 2017. Hokusai: old man, crazy to paint. 1843 magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2017. Sound: Stories of Hearing Lost and Found by Bella Bathurst – review The Observer. The Observer,

Coutts, Marion. 2017. TILLMANS STOPS YOU IN YOUR TRACKS. 1843 magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2017. WHEN THE EXHIBITION BECOMES THE ARTWORK. 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2016. Picasso's Emotional Weather. 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2016. NJIDEKA AKUNYILI CROSBY’S SCRAPBOOK. 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2016. PAINTING THE SPIRIT WORLD Hilma af Klint: first avant-garde painter? 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2015. Cornell’s Beautiful Bric-a-Brac. 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2015. My Summer with Proust. The Guardian online,

Coutts, Marion. 2015. The Feeling of Finishing. 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion. 2015. AGNES MARTIN AND THE GREAT INDOORS. 1843 magazine - The Economist online,

Coutts, Marion. 2015. THE DARK DREAMS OF GOYA’S WITCHES. 1843 Magazine,

Coutts, Marion and Furlong, William. 2003. Audio Arts: Volume 21 No 2. Audio Arts,

Coutts, Marion. 1998. Fine Arts 1998-1999, The British School at Rome. Fine Arts 1998-1999, The British School at Rome,


Coutts, Marion and Furlong, William. 2002. Marion Coutts interviewed at The Chisenhale Gallery about her work Cult.


Coutts, Marion. 2014. The Iceberg. London: Atlantic Books. ISBN 9-781782-393504

Coutts, Marion. 2014. The Iceberg [American edition]. New York: Grove Atlantic. ISBN 978-0-8021-2460-9

Coutts, Marion and Fisher, Elizabeth. 2005. Marion Coutts, Kettle’s Yard. Kettles Yard Gallery. ISBN 1-904561-13-6

Coutts, Marion; O'Reilly, Sally; Deary, Vincent; Wood, Katherine and Bode, Steven. 2003. Marion Coutts. Film & Video Umbrella. ISBN 978-1904270058

Acconci, Vito; Coutts, Marion; Norman, Nils; O'Shea, Mick; Rothschild, Eva and Tzaig, Uri. 2001. Vito Acconci/Acconci Studio, PARA-CITIES: Models for Public Spaces. Trouble Shooting. Bristol: Arnolfini. ISBN 0907738664

Lubbock, Tom; Coutts, Marion and Murray, Peter. 2000. Marion Coutts, Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Yorkshire Sculpture Park. ISBN 978-1871480320

Book Section

Coutts, Marion and Lubbock, Tom. 2012. Introduction. In: Marion Coutts, ed. Until Further Notice, I am Alive. London: Granta, pp. 1-9. ISBN 978-1-84708-531-3

Coutts, Marion. 2005. 01. Marion Coutts. In: , ed. Responding to Rome, British Artists in Rome 1995-2005. The British School at Rome. ISBN 978-0904152494

Coutts, Marion. 2005. Contribution to Helsinki photography festival 2005. In: Mika Elo; Brett Rogers and Marjatta Tikkanen, eds. To be continued... / jatkuu...: Helsinki Photography Festival 2005. Helsinki: Valokuvataiteilijoiden Liitto ry / Valokuvagalleria Hippolyte & British Council. ISBN 0-86-355-5489

Coutts, Marion. 2001. Fair Play. In: , ed. Fair Play. London: Danielle Arnaud. ISBN 09537752-7-5

Coutts, Marion and Hopkins, David. 2000. essay by David Hopkins. Co-published by Morning Star with City Art Centre, polygon. Paperback with CD. In: Alex Finlay, ed. Without Day. Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited; Pap/Com edition. ISBN 978-0748662777


Coutts, Marion. 2001. No Evil Star.

Edited Book

Coutts, Marion, ed. 2012. English Graphic. London: Frances Lincoln. ISBN 978-0-71123-370-6

Coutts, Marion, ed. 2004. Whitstable Biennale. Material. ISBN 978-0954788902

Professional Activity

Coutts, Marion. 2018. The Islands Art Writing Residency.


Coutts, Marion. 2011-2012 Until Further Notice, I am Alive.

Coutts, Marion. 2009. Project Biennale.


Coutts, Marion and Lubbock, Tom. 2011. Great Works: 50 Paintings Explored. Frances Lincoln, London.

Coutts, Marion and Baker, Steve. 2003. The Human Zoo, Hatton Gallery, Newcastle: essay by Steve Baker. UNSPECIFIED.

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