Board & Staff

Current Board of Directors

Leena Vuotovesi (Finland) - President
Leena is CEO of the development company Micropolis Ltd. located close to the Arctic Circle. Previously, Leena was the executive director of KulttuuriKauppila Art Centre running a tailored residency program. She holds a MA in cultural anthropology from the Oulu University, and also has an academic background from the Georg-August Universität Göttingen in Germany and the University of Namibia. Leena has been the representative of Res Artis at the board of Culture Action Europe. She participated also in the work of the EU commission’s OMC working group on mobility of artists as an external expert. In Finland she is active at The Finnish Cultural Foundation Association.

Lea O’Loughlin (United Kingdom) - Vice-President
Lea manages Acme Studios International Residencies Programme (Acme IRP). Working with international artists and liaising with governments and foundations to maximise their investment in London cultural residencies. A vital part of her role is to build strong and sustainable relationships between residency funders, visiting artists and a wide cross-section of communities both within and beyond the cultural sphere. She has a history of developing residencies, promoting international dialogue and critical exchange, connecting people and networks and providing practical guidance and advice to artists and arts organisations. Holding an MA in Contemporary Art from Sotheby’s Institute of Art London and Bachelor of Visual Arts from the University of South Australia her previous experience includes working with The Royal British Society of Sculptors, The Florence Trust, Tate, Gasworks, Cubitt Artists (United Kingdom), MoMA (United States) and Adelaide Central Gallery & Studios (Australia).

Sarah Gardner (Australia) - Secretary
Sarah is a freelance consultant and advisor on international networks and cultural policy with over 25 years as a leader in the culture sector. She was the founding Executive Director of IFACCA, the global network of arts councils and ministries of culture with members in 70 countries, from 2001 to 2017. For the ten years prior to that, she held various senior executive roles at the Australia Council for the Arts, principally as the Director, Strategy and Policy. She was formerly the Director of Public Affairs for the Australian Bicentennial Authority, a consultant in the private and public sectors for the leading Australian firm Issues Australia, technical manager for German company, Schering AG, and worked freelance in England, Italy, Scotland and Spain. Sarah has a BSc and Masters in Public Policy from the University of Sydney and edited the IFACCA report ‘International Perspectives on Artist Residencies’. In 2015 she was appointed to the expert panel for the UNESCO 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.


Francisco Guevara (Mexico) - Treasurer
Francisco is a visual artist and curator, specialized in social design emphasizing the role of contemporary art in economic development and as a tool for social change.  His experience includes projects on international cooperation, alternative economies, intangible heritage, and visual arts education. As an artist he has researched, studied and worked exploring the connection between food, rituals of eating and collective identity.  He holds a degree in Development Cooperation Projects and postgraduate degree in Cultural Management and Communication.  As of 2009, Guevara is the co-founder and Executive Director of Arquetopia, a non-profit foundation promoting Development and social transformation through educational, artistic and cultural programs.

Ika Sienkiewicz-Nowacka (Poland)
Ika is culture manager and curator. Since 1998, she has been working at Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) Ujazdowski Castle. In 2003, she founded the A-I-R Laboratory as the first ongoing residency programme in Poland(www.csw.art.pl/air). Between 2003 and 2011, she curated and co-produced many projects, exhibitions, presentations and publications. She has also acted as project manager of two multi-institutional European projects – Rooted Design for Routed Living(www.design-in-residence.org), funded with European Economic Area and Norwegian Financial Mechanisms resources, and RE-tooling RESIDENCIES (www.re-tooling-residencies.org), supported by the European Commission.

Kira Simon-Kennedy (USA)
Kira is the co-founder of China Residencies, an organisation helping artists find out about opportunities all across China, and providing advice and support for artist residency administrators. China Residencies has grown steadily, forming alliances across four continents, publishing interviews, maps and resources to strengthen the global field of artist residencies. Kira worked across the music, film and art worlds on projects in China, Iceland, France, Mali, and Mississippi. Since 2001, she produced over 50 music videos, as well as several well-received independent feature and documentary films that toured the global film festival circuit. She frequently leads multi-national and multilingual teams to develop creative projects that shed light on the importance of fostering diversity and sustainability.

Jean-Baptiste Joly (Germany)
Jean-Baptiste is the founding director and artistic director of Akademie Schloss Solitude, Germany’s largest artist residency program where he introduced a multitude of activities and new initiatives since its inception in 1989. He also served as one of the founding members of Res Artis in 1993. Jean-Baptiste studied German Studies in Paris and Berlin from 1969 to 1975 and worked as French and German teacher afterwards. From 1983-1988 he was the director of the French cultural institute, creating the very first artist residency ever in a French institute in 1985. Jean-Baptiste has experience in founding a residency, international support of emerging residencies, invention of new fellowship programs, long term perspective for artists residencies, interdisciplinarity, worldwide overview of residency politics, alumni policy strategies and network activities.

Tooraj Khamenehzadeh (Iran)
Tooraj is an artist and curator based in Tehran and New York. He studied Computer Engineering at Azad University in Qazvin, Iran and received a B.S. in 2002 as well as a Film Shooting Course Diploma. As an artist he has shown his photographs, videos and installation works in various festivals and exhibitions nationally and internationally. He has contributed to his cultural identity with an innovative and critical body of work. Over the past years, by attending a number of artists’ workshops and accepting residencies in Sri Lanka, India, Ghana, Pakistan, and China, he has tried to expand his knowledge of contemporary art trends in different countries. He is co-founder and a member of the board of directors of Rybon Art Center, an independent art institute in Tehran. He is also program manager of Kooshk Residency in Tehran.

Raquel Cámara (Spain)
Raquel is a cultural manager and researcher. In 2013, she founded Mapping Residencies and Contemporary Art (MR&), a non-profit association whose mission is to contribute to the research and knowledge of creative spaces and contemporary art production. One of Mapping Residencies' activities is the publication of a bilingual (English/Spanish) magazine specializing in artists' residencies and cultural policies. As a cultural researcher, Raquel has collaborated with many art publications; in 2011 she was responsible for the start-up of an online database for Artist-in-Residence Programs in Europe, commissioned by the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport. While working for the Association of Visual Artists in Madrid (AVAM) in 2007-2010, she participated in a number of campaigns to advance the professional status of visual artists. 


Luigi Galimberti (Italy)
Luigi had been the director of Transnational Dialogues, an exchange and research programme for artists, curators, designers and architects across Brazil, China and several European countries from 2012 to 2016. Transnational Dialogues is run by the NGO European Alternatives, which Luigi has been collaborating with since 2006. Luigi holds a bachelor degree in sociology from the London School of Economics and a master degree in management for the arts and culture from IULM University. He has more than seven years of experience working as a project manager in publicly funded projects in the cultural sector, and was awarded the Chartered Manager status by the Chartered Management Institute (UK) in March 2017. Luigi is currently Collection Care Research Manager at Tate in London.


Vincent Liew (Singapore)
Vincent is a published, multi-award winning visual artist and photography educator. His works primarily centre on the subsistence of people and nature within their environment. The use of complimentary colours is a recurring motif in Vincent’s work and he had exhibited in more than 30 countries. Vincent currently serves as a board member of The Photographic Society of Singapore, the country representative of the Global Photographic Union (Europe), member of the enrichment committee of the Photographic Society of America and curator of the Loke Wan Tho Gallery at the Selegie Arts Centre(Singapore). In addition to having strong experience in the strategic development of art organisations he also holds several honorary fellowships from photography organisations across the globe. Vincent has a Master in Business Administration and had previously held leadership roles with a fortune 500 company. He is currently pursuing a research scholarship in photography at the Nanyang Technological University’s School of Art, Design and Media.

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In Memoriam

Crystal Ruth Bell (1985-2014) (United States/China) 
Crystal Ruth Bell ran a not-for-profit initiative called China Residencies that develops resources for residency programs in Mainland China and for prospective international creatives. Initial efforts included mapping and researching the residency field of 30+ programs. Previously, Crystal was the director of Red Gate Residency in Beijing where she established systems for the organization to scale, diversify applicants, and establish fiscal sustainability. She worked full time in NYC thinking about ways to relay digital information in an intuitive and engaging way at DoSomething.org, a not-for-profit techonology organization. 

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Staff


Melbourne, Australia based

Eliza Roberts - Executive Director (Australia)
Eliza is the inaugural Executive Director of Res Artis focused on fundraising, public profile and strategy for the organisation. Eliza served on the Res Artis Board of Directors from 2012 – 2016, including a 2 year term as Vice-President from 2014. For the past 6 years Eliza worked as Arts Residencies Manager at Asialink, Australia’s largest and most long-standing artist residency program in the region. Eliza has diverse experience in the arts industry, having worked at a range of local and international institutions and organisations including Christie’s auction house in London, The Ian Potter Museum of Art and Artbank. Eliza speaks intermediate level Indonesian and holds a MA Art Curatorship and BA Creative Arts, both from the University of Melbourne.

Amsterdam, the Netherlands (HQ) based

Birte Gehm - Communications and Operations Manager (Germany)
Birte is in charge of communication matters and administration at the Res Artis office in Amsterdam. Besides connecting and promoting the organisation’s members, handling the office administration and taking part in meeting committees, she is also involved in developing content and tools in response to the needs of members and the changing realities of the artist residency field. Birte obtained a double Master’s Degree in Global Studies from Roskilde University (DK) and Leipzig University (DE). During her undergraduate degree she studied at Heidelberg University (DE) and Lindenwood University (USA) and holds a degree in translation studies. In the course of various stays abroad, she developed a strong affinity for matters of cultural exchange and international cooperation with a special interest in the work of NGOs.

Panagiotis Markopoulos – Communications Intern (Greece)
Panos is currently undergoing an internship at the Res Artis office in Amsterdam, assisting mostly with communication and social media tasks but also with Res Artis projects. Panos obtained a Master’s degree in Criminology from Utrecht University (NL) and a bachelor degree (honours) in Criminology and psychological studies from the Open University (UK). Although he has lived half his life in Greece, he was born in the US and lived for several years in other countries such as Belgium, Egypt and Australia. This rich international background has made him quick to adapt to new circumstances and he thrives most in multicultural and diverse environments.

Tehran, Iran based

Maryam Bagheri - MENASA (Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia) Cluster Coordinator (Iran)
Maryam Bagheri holds a BA in English Literature. She has a diverse experience in documentary filmmaking, researching, film archiving, journalism and documentary film distribution. At the moment she works as the board of editors chairperson for Cinema- Haghighat magazine, documentary film specialized quarterly on Iran. She is one of the board members of Rybondoc center in which the main focus is on documentary cinema. As a documentary film distributor, she has experience in communication and strategic planning. She recently joined Res Artis as the MENASA (Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia) Cluster Coordinator.



Honorary Board Members

  • Tatsuhiko Murata (Japan)
  • Karol Frühauf (Switzerland/Slovakia)
  • Maria Tuerlings (the Netherlands)
  • Rudolf Brünger (Germany)
  • Clayton Campbell (USA)
  • Michael Haerdter (Germany)
  • O.P. Jain (India)
  • Laurens Schumacher (the Netherlands)
  • Mario A. Caro (United States)