UKYA's Artist Ambassadors are all alumni artists who have shown with us at our national and/or international platforms. After they've been through the UKYA journey, we invite them to 'give back' by becoming Artist Ambassadors. As part of this role, they become mentors to artists working with UKYA, attending our national and international platforms as a supportive presence; offering advice and top tips through delivering workshops and talks. The ambassadors also advocate for UKYA at events across the country and through their cultural networks. During their time as ambassadors and onwards, UKYA continues to support their practice and professional development as artists and cultural leaders. We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to our ambassadors, past and present for all they do for us - you will always be a treasured part of the UKYA family.
Colette Griffin is a studio holder at One Thorsby Street, Nottingham, assistant curator at Nottingham Castle Museum and Art Gallery and graduate of Loughborough University School of the Arts (2012). She recently participated in the UKYA Blackpool Weekender Residency and has exhibited nationally and internationally at galleries and institutions including The Collection, Lincoln; Attenborough Arts Centre, Leicester; One Thoresby Street, Nottingham (solo); Sungshin Women’s University, Seoul and Jinji Lake Art Museum, Suzhou.
Colette's practice is the consequence of the crossover between studio based working, and domestic, often performative ritual, forming a merging of traditional sculptural language and shapes found within the artists daily routine. Colette focuses on the feel, shape and texture of the world, in some ways fitting into a more eastern canon of art history, representing the Japanese notion of 'living artfully'.
Described by BBC Sunday Politics as "the voice of a generation", Toby Campion's unapologetic words and wit have inspired audiences from Glastonbury to the Royal Albert Hall. An award winning playwright and poet, Toby performs his poetry across the country and has been featured on national networks including BBC1, BBC Radio 4 and E4. UK representative at a number of international poetry tournaments and projects, including Capturing Fire and The Next Generation Speaks, Toby produces the UK National University Poetry Slam & Summit and co-runs Midlands poetry night, Find the Right Words, as well as facilitating writing workshops across a range of settings.
Jasleen Kaur is a Scottish Indian artist based in London. Brought up in a traditional Indian household in Glasgow, she is fascinated by the malleability of culture. Her work examines the continual adaptations and subtle changes in people’s behaviours and traditions, exploring how social histories become embedded in materials and objects. The idiosyncratic habits of family members inspire her work; refashioned objects are based on instinct and resourcefulness, reflecting a hybridity of national custom and reconsidering the realities of materiality, usage and everyday routine.
Jasleen is a visiting lecturer at The Royal College of Art and devises workshops and programmes for the Victoria & Albert Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Crafts Council and Sorrell Foundation. She exhibits worldwide with recent commissions including Baltic 39 Figure Three and Art on the Underground. She was awarded the Jerwood Makers Open 2015 and her work is part of the permanent collection of the Royal College of Art and Crafts Council.
Krysia graduated from Glasgow School of Art's Sculpture & Environmental Art programme in 2013. Since then she has worked as an Arts Specialist at Hospitalfield Arts in Arbroath, been artist in residence at Scottish Sculpture Workshop in Aberdeenshire, held an audio-residency in Croatia as part of the Goethe-funded Architecture & Time Audio Workshop, and exhibited solo shows as part of Glasgow International and UK Young Artists, Derby. Recently she has moved out of her studio at Glasgow Sculpture Studios to commit herself to a sound-focussed practice, leading her to apply to do an MSc in Sound Design and Audiovisual Practice. She is also delighted to represent UKYA as an Artist Ambassador.
Madeline Shann is a theatre maker, choreographer, writer and performer.
She performs in dance and theatre pieces, and she makes her own live work and film. She also collaborates on work with other artists and companies.
Her practice is versatile, drawing on a multitude of disciplines, such as theatre, musical composition and performance, multi-media and various dance styles including contemporary, breakdance, and European folk.
With an emphasis on the intention behind the aesthetic, she works to tease out idiosyncrasies of human behaviour to ask wider questions about our world, and to make work that is both accessible and emotionally resonant.
The core of her creative approach is above all to experiment; to surprise and be surprised.
Matthew John Atkinson
Born in 1985 in Gravesend, Kent, Matthew John Atkinson received his B.A. at Loughborough University in 2007. Since graduating, Atkinson's paintings have evolved from ethereal and nostalgic hinterlands to eerily constructed and ambiguous paintings, exploring the moral and finite reality that humans have formed. His paintings challenge the viewer to reflect upon and enter into a dialogue concerning their universal vulnerability and empathy: rather than to find ways to deflect and postpone.
Atkinson is a painter whose work has an unsettling power allied to a restless use of painterly skill. Where his work has traces of Richter, Polke and Doig he works with a fusion of techniques to produce works by turns poignant, calculating, hopeful and otherworldly.
Since leaving Loughborough University (2007) Atkinson has gained vital experience through Residencies in both France at Triangle Association in Marseille (2008) and London at the Florence Trust (2008-2009), where he was awarded the Fenton Arts trust Bursary. His work has received continued interest with various group shows around Europe including Bright Lights of London Painting, Tilburg (2010), The Importance of Being Original, Padova (2012) and Speak, Clown!, London (2013).
Rosalind Davis is an artist-curator and a graduate of The Royal College of Art (2005) and Chelsea College of Art (2003). As an artist Davis works within painting and installation and has exhibited nationally and internationally in a wide range of galleries and has had a number of solo shows in London: the Bruce Castle Museum (2013); John Jones Project Space; Julian Hartnoll Gallery (2009); The Residence Gallery (2007) and The Stephen Lawrence Centre. Selected group exhibitions have been at the Courtauld Institute; Standpoint Gallery; Transition Gallery; The Roundhouse; Phoenix Brighton; APT Gallery; the Lion and Lamb Gallery; The ING Discerning Eye; the Lynn Painters Stainers Prize and the UK Young Artists Event. Her work is held in a number of private collections and a public collection.
Davis has been appointed as permanent Curator at Collyer Bristow Gallery (begins October 2016) and her exhibition; Complicity. Artifice and Illusion was reviewed by Art Top 10 here ‘Cracking Show. Superb Artists. Brilliantly curated.’ Previous curatorial projects have been at Standpoint Gallery, Geddes Gallery and with ZAP at Bond House Gallery (ASC).
Davis has an expertise in the arts and creative sectors, managing and developing artist led arts organizations and events; Zeitgeist Arts Projects (ZAP 2012-16) and Core Gallery (2009-11,) based in London. Through these she co-directed an innovative and dynamic artist’s educational, membership and exhibition programme, building strategic partnerships and audiences across the country. As a creative consultant Davis has worked for arts organisations, charities and independants as well as corporations such as BBC4 and E4.
Davis is a Published writer for a variety of publications and co-author of ‘What they didn’t teach you at art school’ commissioned by Octopus Books which will be internationally distributed at the end of 2016.
Liz West creates vivid environments that mix luminous colour and radiant light. Working across a variety of mediums, West aims to provoke a heightened sensory awareness in the viewer through her works. She is interested in exploring how sensory phenomena can invoke psychological and physical responses that tap into our own deeply entrenched relationships to colour.
West's investigation into the relationship between colour and light is often realised through an engagement between materiality and a given site. Within physical and architectural space, West uses light as a material that radiates outside of its boundaries and containers. She playfully refracts light through using translucent, transparent or reflective materials, directing the flow of artificial and natural light. Our understanding of colour can only be realised through the presence of light. By playing and adjusting colour, West brings out the intensity and composition of her spatial arrangements.
Viviana Rocha and Jean-Pierre Nyamandunda – What Is Written Dance Company
We are an emerging dance company comprised of individuals from different training and style backgrounds. We are connected by the journey of exploring the liberation of oneself through the medium of dance, pushing our extremities to create new movement vocabulary and innovative dance pieces.
Our company is comprised of two main choreographers, and they have experience both in teaching and choreography. Through years of working together they have developed a unique choreographic partnership which incorporate many different practices.
At What Is Written Dance Company we aspire and thrive on giving people meaningful experiences during our performances. We believe that even though art can change the world a little, it can change an individual's world entirely.