Street view of the New Art Exchange building, black painted building, boxed shape with many square windows.

History of NAE

NAE was formed in 2003 as a new organisation and partnership between APNA Arts and EMACA Visual Arts. APNA Arts focused on South Asian arts and played a key role in the development of the Nottingham Mela, where EMACA Visual Arts supported the development of artists of African/Caribbean origin. Together, these partners created a strong and dynamic new organisation to drive the successful development of New Art Exchange in Hyson Green, Nottingham.

NAE’s important arts programme to date has included exhibiting artists such as Rashid Rana (celebrated as the most accomplished artist from South Asia today) Elizabeth Price (winner of the Turner Art Prize 2012), Hurvin Anderson (Art Now, Tate Britain) Christian Marclay (winner of the Golden Lion award at the 2011 Venice Biennale), Hetain Patel and Tanya Habjouqa (Magnum Emergency Fund Grantee). New Art Exchange is also established as a highly sought after venue for theatre, music, dance and arts and cultural festivals – hosting artists such as MOBO prize winning performers Soweto Kinch and Zoe Rahman; Brit Award winner Emile Sande and critically acclaimed dancers Aakash Odedra, Qawwali legends Rizwaan Muazam, to name just a few.

In 2009 New Art Exchange won five architectural and design awards: the RIBA National Award, the RIBA East Midlands Award, The Lord Mayor’s Awards for Urban Design – New Build and Overall Award, as well as the National Civic Trust Award.

Floating Coffins, commissioned by NAE in 2008, was bought by Tate in autumn 2011 and has since been featured in the seminal exhibition Migrations at Tate Britain.


In 2010 New Art Exchange launched and co-hosted the prestigious British Art Show 7, widely recognized as the most ambitious and influential exhibition of contemporary British art.

In 2011, our young people’s programme YARD (Youth Arts Research Development) was awarded one of three UK places in the International young people’s theatre festival Contacting the World.

In 2013 NAE become a partner of the Google Cultural Institute, joining a list of prestigious galleries and museums including; Anne Frank House, LIFE photo collection, Smithsonian Institution and the Nelson Mandela Centre. The first digital story produced for the Google Cultural Institute by New Art Exchange draws on work from, Realism in Rawiya, specifically focusing on the story of the Speed Sisters, the first all-female auto-racing team to come out of the Middle East. To view the Speed Sisters digital story click here.

In 2015 NAE led a partnership, as Executive Producers EM15 to present a pavilion as part of the Venice Biennale official collateral programme, edition 56, headed by Skinder Hundal CEO with lead artist Doug Fishbone featuring John Akomfrah, Yinka Shonibare, Lindsay Sears, Yara El Sherbini, Hetain Patel, Ellie Harrison, Eyal Weizman, Candice Jacobs and a curatorial team including Melanie Kidd, John Plowman, Louise Clements and Peter Bonnel.












Current exhibitions