The Team

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  1. Shaun Curtis : Director, Liverpool

    Shaun joined Metal following four years working across Tate Modern, Tate Britain and Tate Liverpool, as Curator of Young People's Programmes. In these roles he worked internationally and curated, commissioned, and produced many multidisciplinary performances, exhibitions and events; often with a focus on the intersection between music and visual art. Prior to this, Shaun also worked in programming, education and participation capacities for DaDaFest International (Disability and Deaf Arts), Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Liverpool Biennial. During his career Shaun has worked in collaboration with many artists and creative organisations across a broad spectrum of disciplines including; Warp Records, Punchdrunk Theatre Company, Actress, Jeremy Deller, Matthew Herbert, Oneohtrix Point Never, Martin Creed and Kae Tempest.

  2. Mark Richards : Director, Peterborough

    Mark joined Metal in May 2013, after eight years at Arts Council England based in Cambridge. Through his various senior management roles for ACE, he has developed a very strong understanding of the east region, its strengths and challenges. He has also worked within local government, arts venues of varying scales, as a Higher Education tutor and a practising visual artist. He has an MA in European Cultural Planning.

  3. Andrea Cunningham : Director, Southend

    Andrea joins Metal from a career in museums and galleries spanning over 20 years. Most recently as Head of Learning & Skills at the V&A Museum of Childhood and previously as Head of Informal Learning & Access at the National Maritime Museum. An art historian by training, she has enjoyed working across a range of organisations such as the Museum’s Association, the National Gallery, Tate Modern and Orlean’s House Gallery & Borough Arts Service. Bringing skills from learning, public engagement, exhibition & interpretation development to cross-disciplinary public programming, Andrea’s practice is characterised by audience-centred, socially engaged and participatory approaches to creativity. A resident of Leigh-On-Sea, she values the importance of people and place in the creative landscape.

  4. Jenny Porter : Senior Project Manager, Liverpool

    Jenny is an experienced project manager, producer and curator. For five years she curated the annual Liverpool Art Prize exhibition, working closely with a wide range of contemporary visual artists based in Merseyside. Jenny is passionate about engaging diverse audiences, particularly people who may not see the arts as something for them. She also continues her own practice as a visual artist and has a passion for film and artists' moving image.

  5. Ruth Campbell-Ekins : Senior Project Manager, Peterborough

    Ruth has been at Metal Peterborough since its inception and has recently been promoted to Senior Project Manager. She is a practicing artist having studied at Central St Martins and London College of Communication. She has an MA in Photography.

  6. Paige Ockendon: Senior Project Manager, Southend

    Paige joined Metal in 2016 and now leads on a variety of projects in Southend, including creative education programmes, community events and participatory projects with visiting artists-in-residence. She is proud to support emerging creatives working in all disciplines and seeks to connect people through creativity. Paige is a Fine Art graduate from Nottingham Trent University and is currently a member of the 19/20 artist cohort of TOMA (The Other MA.)

  7. Michaela Freeman : Senior Project Manager, Estuary 2021

    Michaela is Metal's Senior Project Manager for Estuary 2021, having previously looked after digital projects and marketing. She worked at National Gallery and Academy of Fine Art in Prague, Flowers East Gallery in London, ran a publishing company Divus and edited State art magazine. She also works as a freelance curator and writer; with an MA in Fine Art Administration and Curatorship from Goldsmiths College.

    Twitter: @misafreeman

  8. Thea Behrman : Senior Project Manager, Estuary 2021

    Thea joined Metal in September 2019 as Senior Project Manager for Estuary 2021. She relishes collaborating with partners, artists and curators to create exceptional public artworks and participatory programmes to create surprising experiences for the broadest possible audience. Her career has embraced partnership development, fundraising, communications and co-devising arts programmes for a range of organisations including Furtherfield and 2NQ in Finsbury Park, Creative Foundation, Coin Street Community Builders and London Symphony Orchestra. She is also a trumpet player and school governor.

  9. Stef Bradley: Project Manager, Liverpool

    Stef is an experienced cultural educator and producer, joining Metal in October 2019 after three years coordinating public engagement and learning programmes at National Museums Liverpool. She has an MA in Art, Aesthetics and Cultural Institutions from University of Liverpool and a PGCE from University of Nottingham, working within formal education for a number of years as an English Literature teacher prior to her work within the cultural sector. Stef is passionate about film and has coordinated DIY cinema events as a programmer for community cinema projects Liverpool Small Cinema and Empty Spaces Cinema. She also hosts a regular science fiction book club in Liverpool.

  10. Sarah Steenhorst: Project Manager, Peterborough

    Sarah Steenhorst is a Cambridge-based Dutch project manager and artist who develops socially engaged art projects for the last 10 years. She is particularly interested in ways to engage people and sectors from different backgrounds with artists and the arts. Her work is founded in the conviction that art can be seen everywhere, is important to our society and can create social, political, and communicative impact. Sarah has a BA in Fine Arts and an MA in Arts Management.

  11. Hannah Clarke : Project Manager, Southend

    Hannah provides support for projects, events and for the artists-in-residence. She grew up in Southend-on-Sea and has a background in the arts, graduating with a BA Hons from Exeter in Art History and Visual Culture. Prior to Metal, Hannah has explored different creative disciplines, working as the head chef at a local vegan restaurant. Her passion for food, art and culture has been fueled by her love for travel, particularly within Italy and Japan.

  12. Devon Holcombe : Finance Manager

    Devon joined the Metal Southend team at the beginning of 2020. She manages the Finance across all three sites. She has been working within Accounts for the last 8 years , completing her AAT studies in 2014. Since 2016 she has been a volunteer within the homeless community, and has a keen interest in mental health and wellbeing.

  13. Simone Kelly : Marketing and Communications Manager

    Simone joined Metal during the turbulence of 2020, after achieving a Distinction in an MA in Corporate Communications, Marketing and Public Relations at University of Leeds. Simone has both a passion and background in the arts, graduating with a BA in English Literature from Newcastle University and enjoying regular trips to the theatre. Simone is also a spoken-word artist and an avid blogger, who has had her poetry published in UNICEF’s Words By and worked with creative organisations such as Opera North and The Leeds Playhouse. Simone hosts her own monthly poetry event ‘Storytellers’ where she invites creatives to a safe space to develop their craft.

  14. Stephanie Stevenson : Company Administrator

    Stephanie provides project support and a warm welcome for artists in residence. With a working knowledge of French and Italian, she comes from a background of Travel and Tourism working as an International Tour Manager. She has also worked extensively in administrative positions in training, banking and media.

  15. Emma Mills : Mental Health Wellbeing Coordinator, Southend

    Emma is the Mental Health Wellbeing Coordinator at Metal. She grew up in Chalkwell and Leigh and has worked in the area as an art therapist, teacher and artist. She has a BA in Fine Art and an MA in Art Psychotherapy. Emma has project managed several art and drama therapy mental health projects in Botswana where she lived for 10 years. She has published articles in journals and art therapy magazines and is passionate about using art and community to help promote everyone's good mental health.

  16. Jon Davies : Administrator, Liverpool

    Jon is an artist, writer and events programmer, being involved in the independent art and music scene in Liverpool for over a decade. He directed audiovisual agency Deep Hedonia between 2012 and 2017, working with a host of festivals and organisations across the UK, and has since worked with Abandon Normal Devices, CTM Festival and FACT gallery as a freelance projects coordinator and workshops mediator. Jon is an active artist and musician, collaborating with various interdisciplinary artists, and also writes regularly for The Wire. https: //

  17. Jack Wilkin: Administrator, Peterborough

    With a degree in Drama and Creative Writing from De Montfort University, Jack has developed a practice that explores queer theatre and comedy. Before coming to METAL, he previously spent a year working for The Kite Trust, a LGBT+ youth charity that provides support for under 25s throughout Cambridgeshire. This has fuelled his passion for engaging with local community groups, as well as getting involved in events such as Cambridge Pride.