Executive Committee

Current members of the Executive Committee (serving 2018-20)

Members of the Executive Committee serve two years as volunteers, facilitating the continuation of the union.

There is more information about the current committee below:

 


Zita Holbourne, London
Joint National Chair

Zita Holbourne is an award winning visual artist, designer, art curator, author, poet and writer as well as  an experienced  trade union and community activist and human rights campaigner. She  is the National Vice President of the Public & Commercial Services Union, the co-founder & National Chair of Black Activists Rising Against Cuts (BARAC) UK, elected to the TUC Race Relations Committee and on the Board of Advisors for Initiative for Equality.Zita founded the Roots, Culture,  Identity Art collective and curates  exhibitions to showcase the art of young black and migrant artists. She campaigns against discrimination and cuts in the arts and culture sectors.She campaigns for equality, freedom, justice and human rights through art, poetry and activism. She is often described as a political artist and a griot of the struggle.Zita has exhibited art at diverse venues from the Tate &  Congress House to cinemas and conferences and she has performed poetry at a broad range of events from  radio and  TV  the Houses of Parliament and Glastonbury.

‘A union for artists is important because there is an attempt to exploit and underpay artists and all workers deserve the same rights. Art has the ability to challenge discrimination and injustice, to educate, communicate ideas and to promote healing and unity.’

 

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Martin Sundram, London
Joint National Chair

‘I have combined my own art practice with a dozen years’ professional experience within the trade union movement, working for UCU (the college and university lecturers’ union). I have also involved myself over the years in a range voluntary work within the educational sector including governance roles for the Workers’ Educational Association, a provider of adult education particularly in the humanities, currently serving as a member of WEA’s national Council. Art makes a major contribution to the nation’s economy as well as the national quality of life in today’s Britain. The creative sector as a whole punches well above its weight in making this country a cultural world leader . It is important to me that practitioners have a strong voice in shaping how this contribution is supported and developed, which is why I am honoured to be associated with this new and ambitious Union as it engages with these issues, against the backdrop of today’s challenging economic and political environment, on behalf of all artists.’

 


Nastassja Simensky, Nottingham
Treasurer

Nastassja Simensky is an artist based in Nottingham and Artist Development Coordinator at Primary.
‘Artists and art-workers need democratic representation and support in all aspects of their professional work. A robust union, which recognises artists work across a multitude of platforms, as individuals and collectively, can support members to stand with other workers to achieve fairer working conditions and to sustain their practice by challenging and improving terms of employment.’

 

 


Loraine Monk, Surrey

Loraine Monk is a Figurative Artist, Lecturer, Trade Unionist, Women’s Rights campaigner and Labour activist.   She has completed two artist’s residencies, one at St Elisabeth Hospice, Ipswich in 2011 and the second at Thorpe Hall Hospice in Peterborough in 2015.  Her previous work experience  includes Youth work, Welfare Rights Advice, Parliamentary research and Lecturing in FE and Art Colleges.  She has a studio in Hawks Rd Studios in SW London.   Art practice has a unique ability to critique, describe and at times prescribe, our societies/communities; it has the ability to challenge discrimination and injustice, to educate, to communicate and to promote and improve health & wellbeing

‘We need a union for art practitioners, in order to represent artists, to expose and fight the  exploitation and underpayment of artists and protect their rights as workers. We need the AUE to  lobby Arts Funding institutions and highlight areas of improvement, and above all to ensure that all diverse groups within our communities are represented and celebrated, as artists and as viewers and participants.’

 

 


Richard Whitby, London

Richard is an artist, writer, lecturer and gallery technician from Liverpool, based in London.
www.richardwhitby.net

‘Artists are workers, and workers need collective representation! Personally, I feel it took me far too long to engage with the trades union family – joining a union is a way to stand with other workers to fight for better pay and conditions. Here is a piece I wrote on joining the AUE for the Double Negative in Liverpool.’