Donald H. Russell

Donald H. Russell

Donald H. Russell

Assistant Professor

Contemporary art practices; art and society

Don Russell has been an active contemporary art curator and arts administrator since 1979. His research focuses on the exploration and development of new social contexts for art. He is currently GMU’s University Curator, responsible for programming exhibitions and public art on the Fairfax, Manassas and Arlington campuses. Additionally, he directs Provisions Research Center for Art & Social Change, providing creative resources for community-engaged public art projects. He is a co-founder with Edgar Endress of Floating Lab Collective.

Don has produced over one hundred exhibitions as well as public art commissions, residencies, conferences and field projects. His work spans all contemporary art media with particular emphasis on research-as-art, public art, new media, photography and artists’ publications.

Don has extensive experience managing and directing contemporary arts, philanthropic and publishing ventures. He is President of Art Resources International and previously served as Executive Director of Washington Project for the Arts and had various leadership positions at Visual Studies Workshop.

Current Research

Contemporary art practices in environmental science communication

Art museums as learning resources for higher education

Public art and placemaking

Expanded art practices

Art as Research



Selected Publications

Editor, Provisional Research Journal

Expanded Publication List

Grants and Fellowships

Gaea Foundation, Andy Warhol Foundation, Nathan Cummings Foundation, Open Society Foundations, CrossCurrents Foundation, Lambent Foundation, Trust for Mutual Understanding, Quixote Foundation, Metabolic Studios, George Mason University Office of Student Scholarship, Creative Activities, and Research, National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Arts Council, DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, Institute for Museum and Library Services, Washington Post Companies, Philip L. Graham Fund, Meyer Foundation, Knight Foundation, Glen Eagles Foundation, Philip Morris Companies, US WEST, Best Buy, Abell Foundation, Cordish Company

Courses Taught

Honors Seminar, School of Art

Art as Social Action, School of Art


MFA, InterArts, George Mason University, 2017

Recent Presentations

College Art Association, NYC

Mexican Cultural Institute, Washington, DC

Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore, MD

Duke University, Durham, NC

Center for Book Arts, NYC

Goethe Institut Washington, DC