Laura Sillars has been Director of MIMA since July 2018. Prior to this, she was Artistic Director (Co-Director) at Site Gallery, Sheffield, for seven years. Previous roles include Programme Director at Foundation for Art and Creative Technology, Liverpool, and Curator of Public Programmes at Tate Liverpool. She has curated projects for the Liverpool Biennial, Art Sheffield, and Abandon Normal Devices Festival in the North West of England, and has worked collaboratively in Liverpool and Sheffield to develop culture consortia to support the arts ecologies of those cities.
Laura has worked in the US, Asia and Europe on exhibitions with leading international artists such as Mike Kelley, Nam June Paik and Daria Martin.
Robert DevereuxDeputy Chair
After graduating from Cambridge University, Robert Devereux worked with Amnesty International and Macmillan Publishers before joining Virgin in 1980 as Richard Branson's partner. He established the entertainment division of the company of which he was Chairman, which included the creation of Virgin Vision, in its day Europe's leading film and video producer and distributor, the launching of Virgin Radio, Virgin Net, Virgin Interactive Entertainment and masterminding the purchase of Virgin Cinemas.In 1996 Robert sold his interests in Virgin in order to concentrate on his family, leisure investments and his charitable activities. He has been Chairman of Soho House plc, The Big Sleep Hotels Ltd., Frieze Events and magazines Ltd, New Forests Holdings Ltd and the Tate's African Acquisition Committee.
Judith Carlton Is Director of CGP Gallery, Southwark, London. Carlton was assistant director at non-profit Matt’s Gallery, London, and was previously gallery manager at Cubitt Gallery and Studios, London. She has also held positions at the Serpentine Galleries, London, and Hatton Gallery, Newcastle. A publicly funded organisation, CGP London was founded in the 1984 by the Bermondsey Artists’ Group, and now encompasses the modernist exhibition space Café Gallery and Dilston Grove, a poured-concrete church converted into an exhibition space, both located in Southwark Park, Bermondsey.
Lee Mason has worked in the television industry for 17 years. He is currently Drama Commissioning Executive at Channel 4, overseeing over 140 hours of award winning television per year. Previously Lee has worked with a number of UK and International production companies and broadcasters, including Tiger Aspect, BBC, MTV, Endemol, Keshet International, Warner Bros and Shed Media, in both production and development. Before moving in to TV, Lee worked as a Press and Marketing Exec, working with Live Theatre Newcastle, New Writing North, Edinburgh Fringe and Northern Arts. Lee also serves on the board of New Writing North
Paul Smith is a musician best known as the singer for the British indie rock group Maxïmo Park. Smith is the eldest of three children, and was educated at Northfield School. He briefly worked as an art teacher at Stockton Riverside College before he was asked to join the band. He attended Newcastle University completing a BA and MA following a 1-year Foundation Studies course at Cleveland College of Art & Design in Hartlepool. Maxïmo Park released their debut album on Warp Records in 2005 and Smith continues to perform and record with the band. He is known for his energetic and passionate performances. Away from the band, he has collaborated with poet Lavinia Greenlaw on a musical adaptation of her poem, 'Essex Kiss', as well as composing a 26-minute a cappella piece of music for Great North Run Culture. The work is entitled, 'A Mind Full Of Nothing But Continue' and was performed live in 2013 at Sage Gateshead. Paul Smith released his debut solo album, Margins in 2010, before undertaking a full European and UK tour. Alongside this release, his first photographic book, Thinking In Pictures, was released, too, featuring 74 Polaroids taken over 6 years. Recently he appeared as a guest editor for The Mays XIX and was an artistic advisor for the 2013 Festival Of The North East.In 2014 Smith teamed up with Field Music singer Peter Brewis to record an album, 'Frozen By Sight', derived from his travel writing and featuring string arrangements by Brewis.
Paul MossFounder & Director
Paul Moss and Miles Thurlow opened their first gallery in Gateshead Town Centre beneath the 1960’s Brutalist masterpiece ‘The Get Carter Car Park’ in 2004. In 2017 Miles and Paul founded Workplace Foundation, a Charity supporting emerging and under-represented artists based outside of London with a specific focus on the North.
Miles ThurlowFounder & Director
Miles Thurlow (b 1975, Colchester, Essex) studied BA Fine Art Sculpture at Loughborough College of Art before completing his MFA in Fine Art at Newcastle University in 2000. Deciding to stay in the Northeast of England, Miles set up Workplace with another ex Newcastle Fine Art student Paul Moss In 2002, and they opened their first gallery in Gateshead Town Centre beneath the 1960’s Brutalist masterpiece ‘The Get Carter Car Park’ in 2004.
Julia BellAssociate DirectorJulia Bell is Founder/Director of Parapluie, a contemporary art agency providing an art advisory, commissioning and consultancy service for individuals and companies within the public and private sectors who wish to buy, commission and collect art. Julia also acts as a Freelance Consultant within the cultural sector and recent consultancy has included working with MOSTYN, Wales on an Arts Council Wales resilience programme, leading cultural policy discussion and lobbying at national and governmental level for the What Next? movement and writing a Visual Arts Vision document for the City of Sheffield.