Dr Nina Lübbren

Deputy Head of Department

Principal Lecturer, Film Studies

Faculty:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School:Cambridge School of Creative Industries

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Film, media and communication studies , Art history

Research Supervision:Yes

Courses taught: Film Studies, Film Studies and Media Studies

Nina researches German Expressionist sculpture 1910-1935.  She's also an expert on 19th-century visual narrative, particularly history and genre paintings, and on rural artists' colonies.


Nina's website: ninalubbren.wordpress.com


Nina is currently finishing a book on German sculpture 1910-1945. She also recently completed a co-edited volume on French narrative painting 1600-1900. Her research draws on feminism, reception theory and close reading.

Nina's past research has focused on landscape and peasant painting in the context of nineteenth-century rural artists' colonies, with an emphasis on geographical and tourism studies. She's also passionate about Bollywood cinema.

Nina completed her education (primary to PhD) in Jakarta (Indonesia), Sydney (Australia), Heidelberg and Berlin (Germany), Berkeley (California, USA) and Leeds (England). After graduation, she taught at Leeds, Birkbeck College and the Open University before joining Anglia Ruskin University. 

Before taking up her present role as Deputy Head of the Department of English and Media and Principal Lecturer in Film Studies, she was Senior Lecturer in Art History and Modern Visual Culture in Cambridge School of Art.

Nina warmly welcomes research students in the areas of 19th century art, narrative, sculpture, modern German art, and Indian cinema.

Research interests

  • Expressionist sculpture, especially by women sculptors
  • Visual narrative in 19th-century painting
  • 19th-century landscape
  • 19th-century academic painting
  • Rural artists' colonies
  • Ottilie Reylaender
  • Gela Forster

Areas of research supervision

  • 19th-century art
  • Bollywood cinema
  • German art, 1850-1950
  • Modern sculpture


  • PhD History of Art, University of Leeds
  • MA Art History and Italian, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Member, Association of Art Historians (AAH)
  • Member, German Studies Association (GSA)
  • Member, International Society for the Study of Narrative (ISSN)
  • Fellow, Higher Education Academy (HEA)

Selected recent publications

'Gela Forster's Expressionist Sculpture: Feminism, War and Revolution', Art History (special issue on 'Weimar's Other', ed. by Dorothy Price and Camilla Smith), April 2017.

'Women, War and Naked Men: German Women Sculptors and the Male Nude, 1915-1925', in Deborah Ascher Barnstone, Tom Haakenson and Barbara McCloskey (eds), Art and War, Peter Lang (series 'German Visual Culture', vol. 4), 2017.

Painting and Narrative in France, from Poussin to Gauguin, edited with Peter Cooke, Routledge / Ashgate, 2016.

'Eloquent Objects: Gérôme, Laurens and the art of inanimate narration', in Painting and Narrative in France (see above).

'Europäische Künstlerkolonien' ('European Artists' Colonies'), in Thomas Andratschke (ed.), Worpswede und die europäischen Künstlerkolonien, exh.cat. Landesmuseum Hannover, 2016.

Lübbren, N., 2010. The Objects of Genre. In: Baird, O. (Ed.). The Cranbrook Colony: Fresh Perspectives. Wolverhampton: Wolverhampton Art Gallery.

Lübbren, N., 2010. Crime, Time and Gérôme's Death of Caesar. In: Allan, S. (Ed.). Reconsidering Gérôme. Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute.

Lübbren, N., 2009. Narratives of Rural Life. In: McCullough, H. and Stott, A. (Eds.). Dutch Utopia. Savannah, Georgia:  Telfair Museum of Art.

Lübbren, N., 2007. Breakfast at Monet's: Giverny in the Context of European Artists' Colonies. In: Bourguignon, K. (Ed.). Giverny: International Artist Colony. Giverny:  Musée d'Art Américain, and Chicago:  Terra Foundation for American Art.

Lübbren, N. and Crouch, D. (Eds.), 2003. Visual Culture and Tourism. London: Berg.

Lübbren, N., 2003. North and South: Paradigm Shifts in European Art and Tourism, 1880-1920. In: Lübbren, N. and Crouch, D. (Eds.). Visual Culture and Tourism. London: Berg.

Lübbren, N., 2002. Toilers of the Sea: Fisherfolk and the Geographies of Tourism in England, 1880-1900. In: Peters Corbett, D., Holt, Y. and Russell, F. (Eds.). The Geographies of Englishness: Landscape and the National Past 1880-1940. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.

Lübbren, N., 2001.Rural Artists' Colonies in Europe, 1870-1910. Manchester: Manchester University Press and New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press.

Recent presentations and conferences

Conference paper: The Nationalist Languages of Sculpture Criticism in Germany, 1919-1945, at the annual Association for Art History conference, London, King's College London and Courtauld Institute,(April 2018)

Symposium: Käthe Kollwitz (1867-1945): A Life in Text and Image, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham (Oct. 2017)
'Käthe Kollwitz: A Printmaker's Sculpture'

Annual Conference of the German Studies Association, Atlanta, Georgia (Oct. 2017)
'Resistance is Futile: Three Sculptors in Nazi Germany'

Annual Conference, Association of Art Historians, Loughborough (April 2017)
'Sculpture in 1937: Steger, Cauer, Mukhina'

Historical Fictions Research Network Conference, Maritime Museum, Greenwich (Feb. 2017)
'Ahistorical Fictions: German Sculpture from Democracy to Dictatorship, 1919-1939'

Annual Conference of the German Studies Association, San Diego, California (Sept.-Oct. 2016)
'Material and Metaphor in Expressionist Sculpture'

Annual Conference, Association of Art Historians, Edinburgh (April 2016)
'Ornament, Monument and Gender in Weimar Sculpture: Sintenis and Steger'

Historical Fictions Research Network Conference, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge (Feb. 2016)
'The Buttons of History: Creative Anachronism in Nineteenth-Century Genre Paintings'

Annual Conference, Association of Art Historians, Norwich (April 2015)
'Gela Forster's Expressionist Sculpture: Feminism, War and Revolution'

Annual Conference, International Society for the Study of Narrative, Chicago (March 2015)
'Worth a Thousand Words: Narrative Structure in Nineteenth-Century Painting Reviews'