A native of Mobile, Nell is an associate professor of art at Auburn University. He earned his B.F.A. degree from Auburn in 1984 and his M.F.A. degree from Georgia State University in 1992. Nell won the Alabama Artist Award from the Museum’s Red Clay Survey exhibition in 1996, and was the recipient of an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Alabama State Council on the Arts in 1999. His work may be found in public and private collections throughout the Southeast, including the permanent collection of the Huntsville Museum of Art.