English conceptual artist, curator and writer. He studied Fine Art at Newcastle Polytechnic (1984–7). Strongly influenced by the tradition of text-based conceptual art, he depended consistently on literary sources, treating texts as ready-mades to create what he describes as ‘found conceptual art'. A documentary impulse underlay purely text-based works such as ‘Peter Doig's Record Collection', printed as the appendix to Peter Doig Blizzard Seventy-seven (exh. cat., London, Whitechapel A.G., 1998, pp. 139–57), a detailed list of titles complete with academic-style notes. Throughout the mid 1990s much of Higgs's work involved exhibiting the title pages of chosen books. In 1998 he began working on the series Photographs of Books (exh. London, Anthony Wilkinson Gal., 1999): one of the series, Art Aint All Paint, features a photograph of the embossed hardcover of a collection of cartoons from the 1940s. In 1993 he established Imprint 93, an ongoing independent mail art venture which sends out artists' projects. Higgs became an important promoter of contemporary British art, through his work as a critic, as a director of the Cabinet Gallery in London, and as an Associate Exhibitions Director at the ICA, London. He was also one of a team of three curators responsible for the selection of The British Art Show 5 in 2000.
L. Buck: Moving Targets Two: A User's Guide to British Art Now (London, 2000), pp. 146–8
J. Jones: ‘Bigheads Need Not Apply', The Guardian (30 March 2000), Section 2, pp. 10–11 [profile of Higgs]
10 December 2000