Press Release: Contemporary Art Society seeks new Director following Paul Hobson’s appointment as Director of Modern Art Oxford

19 April 2013 By
Photo: Matthew Blaney, 2009

19 April 2013

On making the announcement today, Mark Stephens, Chair of the Contemporary Art Society Trustees said: “Over the past six years Paul’s leadership of the organisation has witnessed an unprecedented period of growth and remodelling. The charity has developed its programmes, audiences and profile and income generation has increased significantly. This year alone we will place more than £3million worth of art in museums and public galleries in the UK, and the acquisition last year of our first ever permanent home has been transformational. We are sorry to see Paul go but are delighted for him at this exciting new chapter in his career and for the Contemporary Art Society.”

Paul Hobson said: “It has been a great privilege and pleasure to have led the work of the Contemporary Art Society over the past six years. I feel a great deal has been achieved with the tremendous support and guidance of the Board and the team and that the charity is poised for an even more ambitious future under my successor.”


Paul Hobson has been the Director of the Contemporary Art Society since August 2007. Prior to his position at the Contemporary Art Society, Paul was the Interim Director of The Showroom gallery, London and held senior positions at the Serpentine Gallery, London and the Royal Academy of Arts, London. Paul read Modern History at Oxford University and has an MA in Aesthetics and Contemporary Visual Theory and an MA in Arts Management and Policy.
In 2007, he co-produced with writer and curator Gilane Tawadros the publication, Life Is More Important Than Art, with contributions from Faisal Abdul’Allah, Stuart Brisley, Susan Hiller, David Medalla, Uriel Orlow, Zineb Sedira, Yinka Shonibare and Terry Smith. Based on the quotation from James Baldwin, `Life is more important than art, that’s why art is important’, the book comprises a series of interviews with artists and investigates the conditions for making and presenting contemporary art from artists’ perspectives at the beginning of the 21st century.

The Contemporary Art Society exists to encourage an appreciation and understanding of contemporary art by a wide audience and to donate works by important and new artists to museums and public galleries across the UK.
With the help of our members and supporters we raise funds to purchase works by new artists which we give to museums and public galleries where they are enjoyed by a national audience; we broker significant and rare works of art by important artists of the twentieth century for public collections through our networks of patrons and private collectors; we establish relationships to commission artworks and promote contemporary art in public spaces; and we devise programmes of displays, artist talks and educational events. Since 1910 we have donated over 8,000 works to museums and public galleries – from Bacon, Freud, Hepworth and Moore in their day through to the influential artists of our own times – championing new talent, supporting curators, and encouraging philanthropy and collecting in the UK.

Modern Art Oxford will celebrate 50 years of influential exhibition making in 2015. Founded in 1965 by a small group of artists and architects, the gallery was championed during its early years by British luminaries including David Hockney, Henry Moore and John Piper. Today, the gallery is one of the most important contemporary art spaces in the UK with an international reputation for its programme of exhibitions, projects and commissions, which are supported by an innovative learning and engagement programme that engage audiences in excess of 100,000 each year.