BACKLIT is a two-storey independent art gallery located in the heart of Nottingham, UK. It provides affordable studio spaces for contemporary artists, supporting early career graduates and emerging artists. In its exhibition role BACKLIT provides a dynamic public programme of national and international artists including original artist commissions, screenings and live debates. Central to the BACKLIT ethos is its strong working relationships with regional universities and its partnerships with other galleries and creative organisations. It is also committed to supporting projects that promote community and local heritage.
As founder and director of BACKLIT Matthew is responsible for BACKLIT’s visual arts exhibition programming and the creative ethos which underpins the gallery. He founded Backlit immediately after graduating from Nottingham Trent University’s BA Fine Art course in 2008. His work as an artist is based around performance, video and sculpture with experimental configurations of people and technologies. He has worked internationally on projects and residencies in Japan, Germany and UK.
As deputy director at BACKLIT Suzanne’s responsibilities include fund-raising, board support, business planning, managing the volunteer and internship programme and supporting the director’s role. Suzanne is also an artist, working mainly in fine art and illustration, and has 15 years experience in arts administration in London where she worked for the Arts Council and co-ordinated the Save the Arts campaign. She works part-time with the Foyle Foundation.
Peter has been involved in Art & Design Education for all of his career – working at Newark and Lincoln Colleges and Loughborough University. Parallel to this he has a ceramics studio which he is currently reviving to develop a range of functional pottery and exhibition pieces, in collaboration with his wife Karen.
Office Manager and Studio Coordinator
As Office Manager and Studio Coordinator Joey oversees the day-to-day running of Backlit, maintaining and implementing administration and communication systems for staff and studio members. She is also a practicing artist with a wide range of experience in managing large art projects and exhibitions internationally
Learning and Community Coordinator
Gina is responsible for producing the Learning and Community Programme at BACKLIT. This involves the development of arts engagement opportunities for families, young people and local community groups. Prior to this role, Gina has worked as an arts educator for galleries, museums and arts organisations across the East Midlands. She is an Engage Council Member and Representative for the region.
Heather is responsible for the marketing and PR at BACKLIT. Born in Nottingham, Heather began her marketing career working as the Audience Development Officer at Nottingham Playhouse. She subsequently worked as the Marketing Manager for The Yard Theatre in Hackney and also in the live music and events division for VICE Media. Heather is a musician and has a particular interest in making sure that the arts can be accessed by everyone.
Catalyst Project Coordinator
As Catalyst Project Coordinator Alice is researching fundraising and income generation opportunities for BACKLIT. She is an artist living and working in Nottingham with strong connections to the local scene. Prior to this she used to run an arts cafe and venue in Nottingham and worked for over 5 years for Barbican Art Gallery. She was previously a volunteer at Backlit and works part time at Nottingham Contemporary.
As Volunteer Coordinator, Carys is developing the Volunteer Programme at BACKLIT. She will be supporting current volunteering and looking for future opportunities for development and funding the programme. Prior to this she worked in marketing, funding and youth engagement at The Groundwork Greater Nottingham Trust. Currently developing youth ideas & projects in and around Nottingham city with a wide range of community and non-profit organisations.
Gallery & Building Facilitator
Ryan is our Gallery & Building Facilitator. He helps manage the safety, security and practical approach to technical support for delivery of the public programme. Based in Nottingham, Ryan is a member of Chaos Magic, an arts project space and studio based within BACKLIT.
Philip Brookes Stephens
Associate Professor for the Faculty of Arts at the University of Nottingham
Co Founder and project facilitator for Quarry Lab, she is a mentor, coach and independent consultant
Consultant and advisor for audience development and stakeholder management
Ex- Director of Strategy, NHS Community Trust, Lincolnshire
Trust Executive, Renewal Trust
Ex- Principal Lecturer, College of Art & Design and Built Environment, School of Art & Design, Nottingham Trent University.