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Image credit: Telethon by TalkShow (foreground) and Into The Wall by Malik Jama (background)



We are delighted to announce The Lowry’s first Artist Development Advisory Groups and to welcome the 10 independent artists and creatives working across live performance and visual arts as our new Advisory Group members. 

As part of our commitment to ensuring our Artist Development programmes reflect and meet the needs of independent artists and that the voices of artists are at the heart of what we do, our Advisory Groups will create space for dedicated conversations about artist development, wider creative sector conversations, and amplify the voices of a diversity of artists in our planning. The Advisory Groups will work together as a specialist group made up of people working professionally in the arts and at different stages of their career. 


MEET our peformance advisory group

Lotty Holder (she/her) 

Lotty is an award-winning producer who has a passion for presenting the best quality, inclusive, new theatre. She has created work with companies including Chronic Insanity, Little Solider, Two Gal, Original & The Big House.  

She has been Associate Producer for Vardy V Rooney: The Wagatha Christie Trial, & A Mirror West End and Co Producer of Instructions for a Teenage Armageddon as head of theatre at Cloudburst Productions. 

Imogen Stirling (she/her) 

Imogen is a Scottish playwright, performance poet and producer.  
Her show Love The Sinner (‘a 70-minute ecstasy of words, sounds light and brilliant design’ – The Scotsman), produced by Vanishing Point, debuted to sold out audiences and five-star reviews across the board and will tour Scotland in Autumn 2024. Her debut play Starving (‘a brilliant watch’ – Broadway World) was presented by A Play, A Pie and A Pint in association with Raw Material and Traverse Theatre. 
Imogen has performed widely around the UK and Europe (inc. Glastonbury, Latitude Festival, Anniki Runofestivaali, Edinburgh International Book Festival).  

Read More about Imogen Stirlings work below.

She represented Scotland at Tranpoesie Festival in Brussels, was commissioned to open the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival and created a performance poetry/drum & bass fusion contemporising the myth of Persephone for National Theatre of Scotland/Push The Boat Out Festival. She features on Sky Arts’ BAFTA-winning television show, Life & Rhymes, was a participant of the BBC Words First talent development scheme and was shortlisted for the Out-Spoken Prize for Poetry. Her debut show #Hypocrisy was longlisted for the Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award during its run at the Edinburgh Fringe. Benjamin Zephaniah called Imogen’s writing: ‘The work of a lyrical genius.’  

Imogen is committed to nurturing new artists and has held artist development roles with Summerhall, Tron Theatre, Roundhouse and Cove Park. 

Photo © Jess Hardwick 

Rafia Hussain (she/they)  

Rafia is a dynamic executive producer and fundraiser collaborating with Britain’s most exciting Black and Brown artists on socially engaged projects locally, nationally and internationally.  

Her portfolio spans small and middle scale productions, co-creation, programming and artist development. As well as an independent producer, Rafia is the Strategic Producer of In Good Company, the flagship artist development programme for the Midlands, delivered in conjunction with a multi-venue partnership. 

Matthew Rawcliffe (he/him)  

Matthew is most known for being a grand finalist in BBC Young Dancer after winning in the contemporary category. Matthew’s recent work includes performing for Betty Nansen Teatret in Copenhagen for their production ALICE. Matthew has an MA in Dance specialising in Inclusive Practice and Immersive Performance.  

As a choreographer Matthew has worked on projects for Severn Arts, The Arches Worcester Festival, Homotopia, SICK! Festival, Tramshed Theatre and Merseyside Dance Initiative. His most significant work The Crisp Sandwich Cafe was created for autistic young people in partnership with National Autistic Society and funded by Arts Council England. 

Tara Fatehi (she/they) 

Tara is a performance maker, performer and writer based in London. Tara works with voice, movement and text, engaging with ambiguity, mistranslation, disjunction, and unfinishedness. Her recent works include Mishandled Archive, 365 days of micro-installations and dances and a book (LADA, 2020); Always Already an 8 hour performance with Karen Christopher (Horizon Showcase). From the Lips to the Moon, an unusual music and poetry night with Pouya Ehsaei. Tara teaches at various universities (Goldsmiths, Central School of Speech and Drama, …). In 2021, she was the first ever resident artist at the United Nations Archives at Geneva. 

Photo © Jemima Yong

MEET our visual arts advisory group

Emma Ogawa Todd (she/her) 

Emma Ogawa Todd is a multidisciplinary artist of British-Japanese heritage based in London, she earned the Deans Award upon graduating from Central Saint Martins (CSM) and studied at The Royal Academy of Art in The Hague. Her work was showcased at South London Gallery as part of the New Contemporaries 2022, and her work is included in the CSM Museum and Study Collection. Emma is currently part of the Associate Studio Program in collaboration with Acme Studios. She is an active member of the Thin Red Lion artist collective, collaborating to foster a more inclusive and accessible arts environment.

Read More about Emma Ogawa Todd s work below.

Through her practice she explores the intricacies of mixed identities, wrestling with the displacement of self and the in-between. Her art making often follows a process of reclaiming family lineage and the indigenous religion of Japan, Shintoism. It has presented a valuable link to her ancestors, cultural identity and sense of belonging. She follows Shintoist ritual and knowledge as a tool to decentre eurocentrism and as a guide to manoeuvre through a damaged world. 

Utilizing found, natural, or recycled materials, her artistic expression aligns with a commitment to better coexistence with the environment, simulating resourcefulness of our ancestors. She explores the Shintoist thought of “kami”, where there are divine spirits or deities believed to exist between humans, the environment, and the divine. Themes such as coexistence, and interconnectedness, as well as the dichotomy of waste and vitality, become focal points of her inquiry, reflecting the interwoven threads of nature and culture. 


Instagram: @3mmatodd 

Kevin Hunt (He/Him/His) 

Kevin Hunt (b. 1983, Liverpool) is a visual artist and educator currently living and working between Birmingham and Manchester. Predominantly sculptural, his work looks for alternate social and functional possibilities within everyday objects and architecture through immersive installation, printmaking, object-making, functional design and increasingly writing – often from his own queer and working class perspective.

Read More about Kevin Hunt’s work below.

A colloquial use (or misuse) of language plays a key part in his working process as projects often develop via in depth research in particular places, over periods of time, working site-responsively or in residence, including recently in Aarhus, Denmark with Aarhus Billedkunstcenter (2022); Plymouth, UK with KARST (2022); Manchester, UK with PINK (2021); Hoorn, The Netherlands with Hotel Maria Kapel (2019) and Athens, Greece with SNEHTA (2016). He was awarded the Wal Pawb public art commission at Tŷ Pawb, Wrexham in 2019 and his work is held in the Government Art Collection, UK and Galila’s POC, Belgium alongside private collections in Germany, Ireland, Singapore, Switzerland and the UK. BEWEME, a permanent architectural intervention at Hotel Maria Kapel has been installed within the social spaces of the institution since 2019. 

Alongside exhibiting/producing work as a visual artist, he has a background working in education and facilitating artist-led activity. Notably he co-founded The Royal Standard in Liverpool in 2006; published the ‘ARTIST-LED HOT 100’ in collaboration with a-n in 2013 & 2017; was Liverpool Biennial ‘education artist in residence’ in 2014; developed ‘fs’ an Arts Council funded alternate-education programme or ‘free school’ of professional development for artists in Liverpool in 2017/18; taught as a lecturer in Fine Art at Manchester School of Art from 2016 to 2022 and in 2020 compilled the ‘PANDEMIC PROGRAMME’, an evolving archive of critically engaged online visual arts content produced worldwide during the first COVID-19 lockdown. Between 2018 and 2022 he was a member of the Acquisition Committee at FRAC Champagne-Ardenne in Reims, France. 


Sam Metz (They/them) 

Sam Metz is an artist based in Hull who creates work that engages with the concept of ‘neuroqueering’. They create sculptural installations that incorporate both film and animation while exploring body-based responses to ecology. As a neurodivergent artist and curator with sensory processing differences, Sam creates work in non-verbal ways that begin and end in movement and embodied interactions without recourse to traditionally privileged verbal and written forms of communication.

Read More about Sam Metz s work below.

Recently they created a series of work called ‘Porosity’ which looked at embodied sensory relationships to the Humber Estuary.  

Sam, through their work with professionals aims to create a shift in perception away from negativity around stimming and neurodivergence. For instance, working with trainee medical students to encourage creative activities that support stimming. 

CIRCA Scholarship MA Art and Ecology, Goldsmiths University 22/23 

Yorkshire Sculpture Network 2022 

Drawing as Stimming, Necessity supported research, 2021-23 

British Art Network Emerging Curator 21/22 

Nominated recipient of Henry Moore Foundation Award 2022 

Ashleigh Beattie (She/Her)

Ashleigh Beattie is a Zimbabwean Visual Artist based in Manchester. My art practice explores themes, of displacement and belonging as a migrant living in the diaspora. The sculptures and Installations I make bring together found objects and materials mainly from my childhood home, with wider political and social issues. 

Rebekah Beasley

Rebekah Beasley 

As a freelance artist situated at Rogue Artists’ Studios in Gorton, Greater Manchester and serving as the co-director of the artist-led organisation Short Supply, I have immersed myself in the vibrant artistic landscape of Greater Manchester since 2016. My work traverses the realms of bodies, gender, and sexuality, utilising the mediums of collage, fibre, print, and sculpture to create immersive narratives that explore the complexities of human experience. 

Read More about Rebekah Beasleys work below.

Throughout my artistic journey, I have continually sought to push the boundaries of my practice, delving into themes that resonate deeply with the human condition. Fantasy and narration are pivotal elements in my work, serving as conduits to delve into the nuanced layers of identity, emotion, and the intricate dance between the tangible and the ethereal.
In my more recent works, I have taken inspiration from long-simmering ideas, weaving new dimensions into my practice. The exploration of movement, wearability, and the inherent performance within the artistic process has become a focal point. I am drawn to the dynamic interplay between the artist and the art itself, creating works that not only speak to the viewer but also invite them to engage actively, contemplating the ever-evolving nature of the artistic expression. 

The theme of movement manifests in my creations, infusing a sense of fluidity and dynamism into the static forms. Wearability becomes a conceptual bridge between art and life, challenging traditional notions of display and interaction. The performance in process is a deliberate inclusion, acknowledging the transformative journey that each piece undergoes, mirroring the evolution and growth inherent in the artistic process. 

My artistic practice is an evolving dialogue with the world, a continuous exploration of the intricate relationships between self, society, and the boundless realms of imagination. Through the synthesis of diverse mediums, I aim to create spaces for reflection, dialogue, and a celebration of the multifaceted nature of human existence. 

As I navigate the artistic landscape, both independently and in collaboration with Short Supply, I am committed to fostering an environment that encourages curiosity, inclusivity, and the perpetual exploration of the beautiful complexities that define us.