Vote now for NAVA's Board representatives

Vote now for NAVA's 2016 artists and art organisation representatives to the NAVA Board.

According to NAVA’s Articles of Association, Board directors must include the following: 5 members elected by NAVA members. Of these, at least 4 must be from different states or territories. They must be made up of at least 2 Artist Representatives and 2 Art Organisation Representatives. The 5th person can be either. Please read the bios below before voting.

Voting closes 11.59pm Sunday 1 May 2016.


***Please note before voting

  • Vote for 5 representatives, two from each category and an additional one from either category
  • Your choices across both must be from 4 different states and territories
  • Read nominee bios below
  • You must be a NAVA Member to vote.

Elected representative – Artists

Pippa Dickson (Tas)

For the past four years I have contributed to NAVA as a Board member and as Co-Chair of the National Craft Initiative (NCI) Steering Committee. The NCI has developed key strategic priorities and worked to develop a bold agenda aiming to secure the future of the craft and design sector so that it is well supported and valued in our society, a priority for NAVA.

I work tirelessly in the not for profit arts sector to develop opportunities for the advancement of art, craft and design. I am the Chair of Design Tasmania and have worked as a project manager and consultant in the private and public sectors for more than 15 years. In addition I have designs held in private and public collections including the Tasmanian Design Centre, Henry Jones Art Hotel and MONA. I have a PhD in Fine Arts, Furniture Design and a BA in Political Science.

I am the founding CEO of GASP, the Glenorchy Art & Sculpture Park in Hobart. In this role I have developed and implemented strategic priorities and raised significant investment from the public and private sector. I work closely with the community, civic, arts and business leaders on developing a shared vision and implementing the critical steps to achieve it.


Shazia Imran (NSW)

With over 25 years in the field of digital strategy development, communications, art direction, advertising and online/digital media, I am committed to communication of ideas in visual form. I have worked in a number of industries including: online/digital strategy development in corporate; digital management in the NSW Government; e-commerce marketing and advertising in the retail industry; online and direct mail marketing in the retail industry; advertising and promotions in multinational agencies.

Currently working with the Housing Industry Association membership organisation for residential building professionals, I play a pivotal role in developing and implementing strategic policies, standards and guides for digital unit, aligning these with business objectives, mission and vision.

I am also a painter and sculptor. My works have been exhibited internationally and hang in private collections in the US, UK and Australia. I’m the recipient of various awards including Lorenzo il Magnifico award at the 2015 Florence Biennale, Italy.

My delicately multilayered paintings explore the connections between landscape, memory and the subconscious through texture and the interplay of light and dark.

After very successful participation in international art expos, I opened AAD Gallery, an online art collective which represents local artists on international level, with most recent participation in the New York Art Expo.


Annie Laerkesen (NSW)

I have worked as a key activator and an artist within the Sydney arts industry initiating and directing A.R.P artists residency program for the past six years with established and emerging artists gaining support from the City of Sydney, Arts NSW, Sydney Harbor Federation Trust and The Sydney Harbor Foreshore Authority.

Over the last 25 years I have managed arts projects within Australia and internationally such as installation coordination for the MCA; 2008 Biennale of Sydney; Venice Biennale 2007; Currents 2007/08Parramatta Riverbeats Festival. I have also managed theatre, live art and community projects for Campbelltown Arts Centre, Carriage Works & Performance Space. I lived between Sydney & Amsterdam between 1995-2008 developing art projects working on major arts festivals. I have a Danish and Maori background.

My art practice, which incorporates photography, installation, painting and textile is an enquiry into the outsider, homelessness, contemporary and historical refugeeism, cross-cultural displacement and the colonial eye.

Some past exhibitions were The Australian Centre for Photography with Deborah Kelly; Harrison Galleries sponsored by Foto Riesel; Moran photographic prize, State Library, NSW; Campbelltown Arts Centre & Blacktown City Art Gallery.

I would bring broad experience and knowledge as an arts worker and artist to the NAVA board.


Sally Smart (Vic)

I am nominating to remain on the NAVA board for a second term. I have contributed my knowledge and experience as an artist, practising for over thirty years in Australia and internationally to support and advocate for contemporary Australian art. Previously I have been a board member of Viscopy and an artist trustee for the National Gallery of Victoria (2001- 2007). In 2012-14 I received an Australia Council Fellowship and am currently a Senior Research Fellow at the School of Art, VCA-MCM, University of Melbourne, Australia.

More than ever we need strong advocacy across all the arts. I have been engaged with and supportive of the work NAVA in taking a politically proactive position with critical arts funding issues in 2015, and its involvement with ArtsPeak as a national united voice for all the arts.

I am committed to gender equality and representation in the contemporary visual arts. I am supportive of NAVA’s connection to Elvis Richardson’s project the CoUNtess Report and for it to actively incorporate the findings to encourage gender equality in Australian visual arts and craft organisations and practices.

I support the visual artist to be central to the visualisation of knowledge and advocate for that right in all the forms it takes.


Grant Stevens (NSW)

As a practising artist, my work has been exhibited widely in Australia and internationally for over a decade. Now based in Sydney, I am also a Lecturer at UNSW Art & Design, and have previously held other academic positions including as a Lecturer in Visual Arts at QUT (2011-2015). As an emerging artist in the early 2000s, I was involved in the Brisbane artist-run initiatives The Farm and Local Art (2002-2004), and also held various casual positions in publicly funded museums and galleries. In Brisbane, I also served on the boards of the Institute of Modern Art (2004-2007), and Metro Arts (2012-2015).

Through this broad range of experience, I have developed detailed understandings of the issues and debates influencing artists, arts organisations, and the sector more widely. I believe strongly in the crucial role that NAVA plays in promoting transparency, collaboration and best practice across the visual arts sector. If selected as a NAVA board member, I will represent the members by advocating for artists and for the importance of arts and culture to enriching Australian society.


Michael Zavros (Qld)

I am seeking a second term as a NAVA board member. I have relished the opportunity to advocate for and on behalf of Australian artists and artsworkers.

I bring to the NAVA board 20 years of experience as a full time professional artist exhibiting widely within Australia and internationally, in both commercial and public galleries and museums. I also bring a knowledge of arts policy and funding platforms having served on the Visual Arts Board of the Australia Council for the Arts 2007 – 2011.

My work is held in numerous private and public collections, including the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Queensland Art Gallery, Australian National Portrait Gallery and Tasmanian Museum and Gallery.

I have been the recipient of several international residencies, grants and prizes including the 2002 Jacaranda Acquisitive Drawing Award, the 2005 Robert Jacks Drawing Prize and the 2007 Kedumba Drawing Award. I was the recipient of the 2004 MCA Primavera Collex Art Award. In 2010 I won the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize and in 2012 the inaugural Bulgari Art Award. I have commercial representation in Australia and New Zealand and regularly show in national and international art fairs.

Elected representative – Organisations

Julie Hansen (NT)

I am Darwin-based, having resided in the Northern Territory for the last 11 years where I have actively participated in and supported the arts. I currently serve as the Deputy Chair for Tactile Arts and understand the importance and need for a thriving arts sector across Australia, especially in regional and remote Australia. I have over 20 years’ experience in project management and business development, most recently specialising in business improvement, grant funding, and policy development and analysis. I am currently studying for a Masters of Business Administration at Curtin Graduate School of Business.


Sarah Last (NSW)

For the past 17 years I have held artist or organisational membership with NAVA and I firmly support NAVA’s advocacy and lobbying initiatives. My breadth of experience as a curator, artist and arts administrator across a range of art forms would inform my Board term. I understand the national art sectors’ complex ecology and diversity of conventional and emerging art forms.

I am the founder and Artistic Director of ‘The Wired Lab’, an artist-led organisation specialising in the exploration of emerging and experimental art forms from a rural/regional context. Since 2008 The Wired Lab has provided art form and skills development opportunities for artists. http://wiredlab.org/

My experience spans visual arts, craft (glass, wearables, textiles), sound, interdisciplinary and ‘live’ arts. This includes artist-led initiatives to public galleries/museums, universities, NFP community arts, service organisations such as Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT), and as a solo or collaborating artist.

I have a national and international profile through my regionally based 'landscape scale' events/happenings that physically (and philosophically) traverse large areas. Epic in scale, these site-specific projects provided unprecedented creative opportunities for some of Australia’s leading emerging, mid-career and established artists.


Hannah Mathews (Vic)

I am a Melbourne-based curator with a particular interest in contemporary practice and arts advocacy.

I graduated with a Master of Art Curatorship from the University of Melbourne in 2002 and have worked in curatorial positions at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne (2008-16); Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (2005-07); Next Wave Festival (2003-04); and the Biennale of Sydney (2000-02). I am currently Senior Curator at Monash University Museum of Art.

I recently initiated an occasional series of projects that engage with choreography and the visual arts which includes Sharing Space, a 12 month program including a seminar with Andre Lepecki, a workshop focused on notation across disciplines and a writing workshop with RealTime and the Next Wave Festival (2016); Action/Response, a 2-night cross-disciplinary program for the 2013 Dance Massive Festival; a 4-day workshop and performance of Yvonne Rainer’s Trio A in Perth, Melbourne and Sydney (2013); and a 5-day workshop of Trisha Brown’s Early Works in Melbourne (2014).

I have completed curatorial residencies in New York, Berlin, Tokyo and Venice, and teach curatorial studies at RMIT University, Melbourne. As well as being a NAVA board member for 2 years, I currently sit on the boards of City of Melbourne Arts & Cultural Heritage and International Art Space, Perth.


Kelli McCluskey (WA)

I am an artist and co-founder of tactical media art group, pvi collective. pvi creates agitational, participatory artworks that are intent on the creative disruption of everyday life.

I have toured extensively throughout Australia with pvi’s critically acclaimed artworks & internationally, including to Taiwan, Sweden, Indonesia, Singapore, Denmark, Scotland and Germany.

I am a passionate advocate for live art practice and its continued growth in this country. I am always on the look out for ways to champion experimental art forms in Australia. I have been a proud board member of NAVA since 2013 and have looked to provide support in the areas of its transmedia future-proofing, ARI profiling and membership expansion as well as aiming to represent artists who sit outside the confines of traditional genres.

I have mentored emerging practitioners through my work with pvi as well as through federal initiatives Spark Youth Arts, Splendid Arts, Situate: Arts in Festivals and Propel. I co-founded Proximity Festival in 2011 & initiated the artist led incubator space, cia studios in 2008, which I co-manage with pvi.

In 2016 I received the prestigious ‘outstanding achievement in emerging and experimental arts’ award from the Australia Council for the Arts for my work within the sector.


Claire Anna Watson (Vic)

I am excited at the prospect of serving as a board member of NAVA. I will bring a fresh perspective to its diverse program and strategies, reinforcing a truly nationwide perspective. I will advocate for better conditions for artists in the public sector, and strengthening artist-run initiatives which play a crucial role in the career development of artists.

I am Chair of the Artistic Directors, BLINDSIDE, Melbourne. Since joining BLINDSIDE in 2010, I have increased public and philanthropic support of the organisation, working to implement a new and ambitious strategic direction including the implementation of a national and international touring program, biennial festival, new brand, website and online gallery, PLAY.

Importantly, I also bring experience as a practising artist having exhibited in projects across Australia and internationally for over 10 years. My video and sculptural works have been curated into group exhibitions, including Cornucopia at Shepparton Art Museum, Sydney Contemporary and the NETS Victoria touring exhibition Made to Last.

I am also a practising curator currently at Bundoora Homestead Art Centre where I am reinvigorating the program with ambitious contemporary art projects, Indigenous arts projects, artists-in-residence and developing the Darebin Art Collection. My experience as a curator also includes touring exhibitions across Asia and Australia and serving on advisory panels for Creative Victoria.