I have wide experience in the arts and cultural sectors. Currently I am Creative Enabler (programme director) for Ideas Test, a Kent-based action research programme exploring new, innovative, demand-led models for increasing arts engagement. This is part of the national Creative People & Places programme funded by the Arts Council.
Prior to that I held a number of roles at Arts Council England, originally as a visual arts specialist where I devised and delivered the Art Plus programme in partnership with the regional development agency building capacity for artists and organisations to work in the public realm, then moving into management roles with responsibilities including engagement and participation, digital and diversity.
I have worked extensively in the public realm as a researcher, consultant and creative producer and am particularly interested in the development of relationships between artists and their audiences and how people acquire skills in the arts.
I have taught at University of Brighton ,University of Sussex and Kent Institute of Art & Design (now UCA) and University of Kent. I have been an advisor to South East Arts, and the Crafts Council. I am a board member of Blast Theory and am on the Royal Opera House Bridge advisory panel. I am also a school governor at a special school.
I had no real career advice at school, certainly none which helped me focus on a creative career, and as a result went on to study history, whilst painting, drawing and working in theatres on the side. I found my way into working in the arts more by luck than plan, but have had a great time none the less. Life is too short to spend doing something you don’t love!
I want to volunteer for Arts Emergency because I’d like to use my experience and knowledge to support young people to make good choices for themselves, and because I enjoy mentoring and development and have done a lot of work of this kind with artists. I would welcome the opportunity to share my experience and am sure In return I would learn in turn from the mentee.