Vivien Lovell BA Hons FRSA Hon FRIBA

Founder-Director

Vivien Lovell is a visual arts curator with established expertise in commissioning permanent and temporary art within the public realm.  She founded Modus Operandi in 1999 as an independent consultancy, having previously been Founder-Director of Public Art Commissions Agency (PACA) from 1987 to 1999. She has championed the field of art in the public realm since 1978, integrating art strategically as a key element of environmental, architectural and regenerative schemes, and has initiated many collaborative projects between artists, architects and other design professionals.   Public art strategies and visual arts frameworks led by Lovell under Modus Operandi include those for the BBC Broadcasting House Redevelopment, Liverpool Vision, Liverpool Housing Action Trust, Docklands Light Railway, London Overground, University of Exeter, St Martin-in-the-Fields, MediaCityUK in Salford, University of Oxford’s Radcliffe Observatory Quarter, the new Bodleian Library and Westgate Oxford. Further commissions include three permanent artworks for the 2012 London Olympics and a series of commissions for The Crown Estate in central London. She was commissioned by The Arts Council in 2007 to write ‘Percent for Art: A Review’ and is currently leading a public art handbook for the Greater London Authority. 

Whilst Director of PACA, Lovell led many public art strategies including Public Art in Cardiff Bay, the Strategy and Art Programme for Birmingham City Council, and commissions for clients including London Docklands Development Corporation, the Foreign Office Overseas Estate Department, European Passenger Services and St John’s College Oxford. From 1990 – 1994 she chaired Public Art Forum and initiated the Alliance for Art, Architecture and Design with the RIBA, a fixed-term project that successfully generated wider acceptance of interdisciplinary collaborative practice.

Lovell was previously Public Art Co-ordinator, West Midlands Arts (1985-1987); Sculpture Co-ordinator, National Garden Festival Stoke-on-Trent (1985-1986); Deputy Director, Ikon Gallery (1982-1985) and Visual Arts Officer, London Borough of Tower Hamlets (1978-1982). 

Lovell lectures and participates in international conferences; her areas of research include artist-designed public spaces, new responses to ‘monument’ and ‘memorial’, and artists’ interdisciplinary collaborations. Publications include ‘Public: Art: Space’ (Merrell Holberton 1998); ‘Phoenix: Architecture, Art, Regeneration’ (Black Dog, 2004) and Commissioning Guidelines in ‘Open Space’ (Arts Council & Central London Partnership, 2007) and Consultant Editor for Commissioning Contemporary Art (Buck and McClean). She is currently Chair of the Fine Art Faculty, The British School at Rome.