Emma Stibbon 2.jpg

Life and Work

Emma Stibbon

From October to December 2010, the artist Emma Stibbon lived and worked in Rome as a Derek Hill Foundation scholar at the renowned British School at Rome. Here, she could immerse herself in the city’s historically-charged architecture and internalize the diverse symbolic codes of different historic buildings. Stibbon is primarily interested in what she calls the fragility of the monumental or the supposedly permanent. This idea of utopian architecture’s fragility is underscored by the delicate character of her medium – masterful architectural drawings and cityscapes with white chalk or ink on paper or chalk on black-primed wood fiberboard. In her earlier Berlin series, the viewer is confronted with an artistic investigation of how one government can appropriate the architecture of earlier governments in order to legitimate its own system.

Her images are sourced from reality, but the play of perspective and proportions in them makes them less photorealistic than dramatic or even heroic. They are images of a (failed) utopia, or perhaps even of an anti- or dystopia. The architecture is always monumental, whereas the individual is very small – seemingly insignificant and overwhelmed by the physical and metaphorical scale of the buildings as well as the ideologies reflected in them.

Emma Stibbon lives and works in Bristol (GB).


1962 born in Münster, DE
1980/81 Portsmouth College of Art, Hampshire, GB
1981 – 1984 BA (First Class Hons) Fine Art, Goldsmiths, University of London, GB
1984 – 1986 HND Paper Conversation, Camberwell College of Arts, London, GB
2002 – 2005 MA Research Fine Art, University of the West of England, Bristol, GB
lives and works in Bristol, GB

Prizes and Awards

2013 Zuschüsse für den Arts Award: expedition costs Arctic Circle
2012 University of Brighton Research Sabbatical Scheme
2009 The Friends of the Laing Purchase Prize, Northern Print Biennale, Newcastle on Tyne
Kunstpreis: Arts Council England, South West
British Council support Emma Stibbon: StadtLandschaften
2008 Aufenthaltsstipendium am Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge
2007 Exchange Partners in Print: False Gods, Honourable Mention
University of Brighton School of Arts, Design and Media, Brighton
Kunstpreis: Arts Council England, South West
2006 Printmaking Today Prize: Originals ‘60, Mall Galleries
2005 Kunstpreis: Arts Council England, South West
2004 RWA Open Print Exhibition
2002 St. Cuthberts Mill Paper Prize, RWA Autumn Open
Talboys Bequest Purchase Prize, RWA Autumn Open
Juliet Gomperts Memorial Trust Residency Award, IT
2001 Nominiert für den Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award
2000 Lark Trust Prize, RWA Open Triennial

Works (Selection)

Emma Stibbon, Vatican III, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Vatican III, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Defaced, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Defaced, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Aqueduct, Rome, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Aqueduct, Rome, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Vatican II, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Vatican II, 2011
Emma Stibbon, Stadio dei Marmi, 2010
Emma Stibbon, Museo Della Civiltà Romana, 2010

Solo exhibitions (selection)

2019 Territories of Print 1994–2019, Rabley Drawing Centre, Mildenhall, Marlborough, Wiltshire
Fire and Ice, Alan Cristea Gallery, London, DE
2017 Emma Stibbon – Uncertain Ground, Galerie Bastian, Berlin, DE
Emma Stibbon: Volcano, Alan Cristea Gallery, London
2015 Ice Limit, The Polar Museum, Cambridge
Ice Mirage, Galerie Bastian, Berlin, DE
2013 Terra Infirma, Rabley Drawing Centre, Wiltshire
2012 Berlin/Potsdam: Changing Cities, Kunstverein Kunsthaus-Potsdam, DE
Terra Infirma, Listhus Artspace
2011 The Gods that Failed, Beck & Eggeling International Fine Art, Dusseldorf, DE
2010 Now’s the Time, Upstairs Berlin, Berlin, DE
City Landscapes, University of Brighton Gallery, Brighton
2009 Ephraim Palais, Stiftung Stadtmuseum, Berlin, DE
2008 Glacial Shift, Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge
Retreat, R O O M, London
2007 Antarctica, Upstairs Berlin, Berlin, DE
2006 Rabley Contemporary Drawing Centre, Mildenhall, Wiltshire
Emma Stibbon, ROOM, Bristol
2002 Grand Tour, Jill George Gallery, London
2001 Russell Cotes Museum and Art Gallery, Bournemouth

Group exhibitions (selection)

2020 Wild Fire, Centre of Gravity, Bristol
2019 Ruskin, Turner and the Storm Cloud, York Art Gallery & Abbot Hall, Cumbria
The Museum of the Near Future, Ruskin Library, Lancaster
Palace of the Republic: Utopia, Inspiration, Controversy, Kunsthalle Rostock, Rostock, DE
Viermal Neues Auf Papier II, Sprengel Museum, Hanover, DE
Blosse Landschaft Waldkraiburg, Städtische Galerie Waldkraiburg, Waldkraiburg, DE
Fire: Flashes to Ashes in British Art 1692-2019, Royal West of England Academ, Bristol
2018 Print Project Space: Royal Academicians in Focus, Alan Cristea Gallery, London
2016 At the Still Point, Galerie Bastian, Berlin
Towards Night, Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne
Recent Acquisitions – Landscape and the Urban Environment, New Art Gallery Walsall, Walsall
Visions of the Great White South, Bonhams, London
Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, London
2015 China Academy of Arts, Museum of Contemporary Art, Hangzhou, CN
Ein Baum ist ein Baum ist ein Baum..., Beck & Eggeling International Fine Art, Dusseldorf, DE
Summer Exhibition, Alan Cristea Gallery, London
The Drawing Room, London
2014 Drawn to the Real, Alan Cristea Gallery, London
Renaissance Reloaded (mit Michael Craig Martin und Heribert C. Ottersbach), Beck & Eggeling International Fine Art, Dusseldorf, DE
2012 Christine Schultz und anderen, Upstairs Berlin, Berlin, DE
Collaborators 2012, R O O M, London
2011 Changing Perspectives, The Bristol Gallery, Bristol
Infinite Beginnings, Austin / Desmond Fine Art, London
2010 Emma Stibbon – Wolfgang Temme, Verein für Original-Radierung, Munich, DE
Sea Fever: From Turner to Today, Southampton City Art Gallery, Southampton
2009 Stiftung Schleswig Holsteinische Landesmuseen, Schloß Gottorf, Schleswig, DE
2008 Drawing Space, University of the West of England, Bristol
2007 Jetzt, Beck & Eggeling International Fine Art, Dusseldorf, DE
2006 NORDENFJORDS 2006 – Kunst fra Berlin, Kunstbygningen i Vrå, Vrå, DK
2005 Ian Monroe and Emma Stibbon: Utopian Architecture, Upstairs Berlin, Berlin, DE
The Spirit of Place, Victoria & Albert Museum, London
Exploring the Line, Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery, Bristol



Emma Stibbon. The Gods that Failed

Emma Stibbon. The Gods that Failed

  • Artist: Emma Stibbon
    Editor: Ute Eggeling, Michael Beck
    Text: Gérard Goodrow
  • English, German
    Softcover, 14,8 x 21 cm
    20 pages, 15 illustrations
  • Beck & Eggeling Kunstverlag, 2011
    ISBN 978-3-93091970-3
  • 5 €


  • Artists: Tjorg Douglas Beer, Alkis Boutlis, Thorsten Brinkmann, Jonas Burgert, =oggi e adesso (d.i. Christina Feuser), Marianna Gartner, Chris Hipkiss, Richard Jordan, Gustav Kluge, Ulrich Lamsfuß, Martin Maloney, Dan McCarthy, Jonathan Meese, Mariele Neudecker, Diana Rattray, Daniel Richter, Tom Sachs, Kiki Smith, Emma Stibbon, Jannis Varelas, Maja Vukoje, René Wirths, Kailiang Yang, Wojtek Zasadni
    Editor: Ute Eggeling, Michael Beck
    Text: Bettina Schob
  • German
    28 x 21 cm
    32 pages, 26 illustrations
  • Beck & Eggeling Kunstverlag, 2007
    ISBN 978-3-93091945-1
  • 9 €
Further publications


Upstairs Berlin (Hrsg.), Ian Monroe and Emma Stibbon: Utopian Architecture, Berlin, 2005.
Upstairs Berlin (Hrsg.), Emma Stibbon. Antarctica, Berlin, 2007.
Andreas Teltow, Emma Stibbon. StadtLandschaften / CityLandscapes, in: MuseumsJournal, Nr. 3, 23. Jahrgang, Juli–September 2009, S. 64–65.
Andreas Teltow, Dr. Carolyn Wilde: Emma Stibbon: Stadtlandschaften ‒ CityLandscapes, Kerber Verlag, Bielefeld, 2009.
»Einer muss wachen«, in: Barbara Alms, Die gleissenden Gipfel, Wienand Verlag, Köln, 2021, p. 240‒241.


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