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Wednesday 29 May 2024
Open 9:00am - 5:00pm

Our People


Staff & Volunteers


Kate O'Hara

Director
(she / her / hers)

Kate is a driven and hardworking arts professional with over 15 years industry experience in institutional, not-for-profit, commercial and independent arts environments. She takes an innovative and thoughtful approach to her work and enjoys the rewards of challenging and multifaceted work places. She has a proven track record in growing arts organisations in the not-for-profit sector as well as improving returns to artists and growing recognition for artistic movements.

Prior to working at Umbrella, Kate managed Maningrida Art & Culture, a large and prestigious Indigenous art centre in Arnhem land. Previous to this Kate worked with a number of arts organisations in South East Asia, including Romeet Contemporary Art Space in Phnom Penh, Cambodia as their inaugural Curator and Manager. She particularly enjoys working with diverse contemporary art communities and assisting with developing innovative programs to grow artist platforms and community engagement.

Alan Marlowe

Business and Partnerships Manager
(he / him / his)

Alan is an arts-business professional with ten years of experience in the not-for-profit sector. He has faciliated systems changes and created more efficient operating environments, and overseen the growth of Umbrella from a $400k average turnover, to over $1m turnover. His role has required preparing large organisation and project budgets, including re-allocation to fit specific financial accounts models specified by government and funding partners. He holds a Bachelor of New Media Arts from James Cook University, and Certificate IV in Business Administration.

Prior to working with Umbrella, Alan was a 2IC service manager in retail, and also worked with Perc Tucker Regional gallery on their bienniel public outdoor sculpture festival: Strand Ephemera. Alan enjoys the meaning derived from a career in the community sector, and is particularly passionate about the visual arts.

Daniel Qualischefski

Gallery Manager and Curator
(he / him / his)

Daniel is a curator and arts professional who has worked in regional and contemporary galleries in south-east Queensland, Melbourne and most recently North Queensland. His roles have encompassed managing and coordinating exhibitions, marketing, public programs and collection management. Daniel holds a Master of Arts and Cultural Management from the University of Melbourne, a Bachelor of Visual Arts and a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Creative Arts), Honours from the University of Southern Queensland (UniSQ). Daniel is the inaugural 2023 UniSQ School of Creative Arts Alumni Fellow and the recipient of a Museums and Galleries Queensland funded mentorship, which he will undertake in October 2023 at the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra. He is passionate about contemporary (particularly Australian) art, making art accessible and engaging audiences with innovative exhibition designs, curation and programs. Daniel's curatorial interests include platforming regional Australian artists in conversation with national and international artists, recontextualising collections and forging and showcasing collaborations. Recent curatorial projects for Umbrella have included POSTWORLD (co-curated with Kate O'Hara) and FORCED PERSPECTIVE.  

Daniel also creates multi-disciplinary artwork under the pseudonym of Danish Quapoor. He works primarily in a distinctive illustrative and flat-colour style in which organic, geometric and stylised forms float amidst sparse compositions. His practice includes ceramics, textiles, painting and drawing. The artist finds that making art informs his work in galleries (and vice versa).

Erin Ricardo

Arts Program Manager
(she / her / hers)

Erin's role encompasses growing Umbrella's arts program and The Studio. She previously worked in part-time and casual positions for Umbrella, coordinating Umbrella's shop consignments and facilitating weekend public programs. She is a printmaker and visual artist who has run workshops and worked with other artists for projects and exhibitions of diverse scales. She holds a Master of Teaching (Visual Arts) from the University of Melbourne (2010) and a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Honours) from La Trobe University, Bendigo (2006). 


Rikaela Rusch

Marketing and Communications Manager
(she / her / hers)

Rikaela brings a diversity of marketing expertise to Umbrella. From the world of music festivals such as Splendour in the Grass and Island Vibe, to the strategic planning of marketing agencies and government bodies, Rikaela has a proven track record of orchestrating successful marketing and communications strategies within the arts and cultural sphere. 

Fortified by a dual-degree in Advertising and Creative Industries, Rikaela's journey led her from Brisbane to North Queensland, where she has engaged with a range of initiatives, from grassroots to major corporations. Beyond professional pursuits, Rikaela is a dedicated champion for her local community, actively contributing her time and energy to various projects across the region. Working alongside the likes of Djabuganydji/Western Yalanji singer-songwriter Djawarray, hip-hop group Water Streets, the community-run venue Kuranda Amphitheatre, and Papua New Guinean artist MerkAbart, Rikaela lives and breathes the arts. 

Sabrina Toby

PUNQ Co-Creative Producer
(she / her / hers)

Sabrina Toby, a Gangulu woman from Central QLD currently residing in Gurambilbarra/Townsville, has roots in the visual arts, having learned First Nation's art from her aunty (mum) and holds an Honours Degree in Visual Arts.

With a rich history of two decades, Sabrina has actively participated in executive committees of Aboriginal organisations. Additionally, she has founded and managed a sporting organization for five years. Operating a micro Aboriginal art business named Bara Bidyiri, Sabrina's passion lies in exploring various art forms and integrating new mediums into her practice.

Volunteering with Big Eye Theatre, an Aboriginal arts organization since 2019, Sabrina has facilitated art and jewelry workshops and is also a member of their dance group, Mala Jina Jalbu. She serves as the Blak Art Market TSV coordinator, overseeing more than 25 stallholders.

Furthermore, Sabrina contributes to Regional Arts Services Network North Queensland (RASNNQ) as an Arts Officer for the Gulf Region.

Jordan Galliott

PUNQ Co-Creative Producer
(she / her / hers)

Jordan is a creative producer for PUNQ and as a member of the festival team, takes a multifaceted approach to deliver the festival’s artistic vision. She acts as a programmer, collaborator and facilitator to the artists creating the festival’s major commissions. Jordan has produced grass roots stage shows and festivals in Queensland since 2015 and has strong ties to the Gurambilbarra/Townsville arts community.

Jordan is a dancer with a history in Arab arts, particularly the Egyptian raqs sharqi and raqs baladi. She has studied contemporary dance at Central Queensland University and works for Dancenorth Australia as their Community Experience coordinator. 

Christianna Bento

PUNQ Arts Administrator
(she / her / hers)

Christianna is an enthusiastic Arts Administrator with a diverse background in the creative arts. She plays a pivotal role in delivering PUNQ 2024 as Festival Administrator.

Before joining the PUNQ team, Christianna honed her skills through a range of experiences. She gained valuable graphic design insights during her internship at My Language Skills in Valencia, Spain. Additionally, she cultivated her curatorial expertise as an assistant at Art Number 23 Galleries and applied her artistic vision as Art Director at the Athens-based Kovald digital marketing agency.

Driven by her passion for visual communication, Christianna earned her Bachelor's degree in Graphic Design from the University of West Attica in Athens, Greece (2020). Further immersing herself in the field, she also pursued a semester of studies in Communication Design at the University of Porto, Portugal (2017).

Beyond her professional endeavours, Christianna explores her artistic side as a digital artist under the pseudonym Mujurono. Known for her eccentric and innovative aesthetic, she creates captivating flat illustrations and short animations that push the boundaries of conventional expression.


Amanda Galea

Administration and Marketing Officer
(she / her / hers)

Amanda Galea works across a range of areas to support Umbrella's operations, including coordinating the team of volunteers. She previously held positions as Umbrella's Arts Administrator (2022), Festival Administrator for Pop Up North Queensland (PUNQ) (2021) and Business Trainee (2020). Amanda holds a Diploma of Visual Art from TAFE NSW Albury and a Diploma of Business from Southern Cross University.

Prior to working at Umbrella, Amanda volunteered at a range of not-for-profit organisations assisting in administration duties and worked in various customer service positions. 

Margaret Robertson

Public Programs & Retail Assistant
Volunteer Studio Facilitator
(she / her / hers)

Margaret Robertson coordinates Umbrella's shop consignments and facilitates some of the weekend public programs. She is an active artist, longstanding Umbrella member and a leader in the Umbrella Studio Access Group (USAG). Margaret and Lynn Scott-Cumming have been appointed by Umbrella to supervise The Studio downstairs (in conjunction with the Arts Program Manager), particularly with regards to the printmaking presses and processes.


Staff photos courtesy Amber Haines: Kate, Alan, Daniel, Erin and Amanda. 
Staff photos courtesy Amanda Galea: Rikaela, Sabrina, Jordan and Christianna.

Lynn Scott-Cumming

Volunteer Studio Facilitator
(she / her / hers)

Lynn Scott-Cumming is an active artist, longstanding Umbrella member and volunteer, and a leader in the Umbrella Studio Access Group (USAG). Lynn and Margaret Robertson have been appointed by Umbrella to supervise The Studio downstairs (in conjunction with the Arts Program Manager), particularly with regards to the printmaking presses and processes.


Wing Hong Leung

Volunteer Studio Facilitator (darkroom)
(he / him / his)

Wing Hong Leung is a self-taught analogue photographer and a longstanding member of the local film photography community. His efforts were crucial in the set-up of Umbrella's darkroom, and he has been appointed by Umbrella to supervise the darkroom in conjunction with the Arts Program Manager. He enjoys sharing his knowledge about photographic processing and collaborating with the printmakers and other members of The Studio.

Volunteers

Reception Assistants, Gallery Assistants, Exhibition Install Assistants and Interns

Umbrella acknowledges the support of our amazing volunteers, particularly given our relocation and larger footprint (requiring more reception assistance). During 2021 we have been assisted by 27 volunteers for regular shifts. Alison Nicholas, Althea Harding, Belen Diaz, Chantal Oxenham, Evie Hanlon, Gail Pearson, Jan Hynes, Jasmine Blackman, Jemima Krzyzanski, Jonathan Stigter, Kaz Hauser, Karen Williams, Kate Osborne, Lynette Marlowe, Lynn Scott-Cumming, Margaret Robertson, Marion Gaemers, Matilda Davies, Michelle McGuinn, Nichola Borellini, Nicola Inskip, Poppy Schembri, Sascha Millard, Sandi Hook, Sharron Condren, Wren Moore, Yvonne Dutton and 15 other volunteers.

We also occasionally facilitate internships and work experience for those interested in the gallery world to gain valuable skills and insights. During 2021 we have had support from the following work experience students: Lacey Watson from Ryan Catholic College and Nykee Kynuna from Burdekin Catholic High School. 

If you are interested in volunteering or completing an internship with Umbrella Studio, see here: Volunteer


Management COMMITTEE


Alan Carpenter

Chairperson
(he / him / his)

Alan’s career has been characterised by leading complex projects transforming corporate vision to reality. After an early career as an engineering surveyor, Alan moved into project management in increasingly complex tasks culminating in leading development of a town in the highlands of Papua New Guinea.  This required management of a complex array of disciplines, including, finance and administration, engineering, sociology, town and regional planning and economics and commerce. 

More recently, at James Cook University (JCU), Alan led capital planning and development towards reconceiving and reshaping of the Townsville Campus from an isolated and institutional campus into an integrated university town with a thriving knowledge community.  Alan led the project known as Discovery Rise from the germ of an idea to its current conception as a blended community of interests encompassing practitioners, researchers, learners and commercial interests.  More recently he was employed by JCU as a strategist assisting JCU in enlarging the concept by partnering with Townsville University Hospital in creating a unified and seamless health and knowledge precinct, now called TropiQ. Alan also initiated and directed an energy and water conservation project at JCU which has as its flagship project a large district cooling initiative which ranked as the largest in Australia in terms of thermal energy storage and load shifting. The project has won several national awards. 

Alan is now a freelance strategist, Treasurer for Townsville Multicultural Support Group and is nurturing a late career as a 3D artist practitioner.

Ineke Dane

Vice Chairperson
(she / her / hers)

Ineke Dane is an award-winning curator with a background in contemporary art theory, law, policy, photography and journalism, specialising in cross-disciplinary commissions with artists and architects. She has lived and worked in cities across the globe and currently resides in Meanjin Brisbane, Australia, for her role as Associate Curator, International Art at Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art QAGOMA. Prior to her role with QAGOMA Ineke was Associate | Senior Curator with UAP from 2018 to 2023, where she worked on numerous significant strategies and public art commissions including for the adaptive reuse of the iconic Sirius and AMP Capital Quay Quarter buildings (Sydney), for the redevelopment of Waterfront Place (Brisbane), and for new commercial and educational developments in Melbourne, Sydney, Townsville and Darwin. She also wrote and edited a monograph publication centred on integrated art for Ithra Cultural Centre in Saudi Arabia.

Before moving to Brisbane, Ineke worked with renowned arts philanthropist John Kaldor AO under Kaldor Public Art Projects, and independent public art curator Barbara Flynn, while living in Sydney from 2015 to 2018. In 2021 Ineke was awarded major Australia Council and Arts Queensland grants for her independent curatorial initiative Conversations on Shadow Architecture 2021-2022, a group exhibition which explored the cultural, social and political potential of space and architecture with new commissions from Australian and international artists and architects. Ineke regularly contributes written editorial pieces to art journals and features on panels in conversation with artists.

Professor Stephen Naylor

Secretary
(he / him / his)

Currently the Chair of the Academic Board at James Cook University, Professor Stephen Naylor has had more than 35 years working in the visual arts and higher education. He has an understanding of contemporary art practice from a practitioners perspective (as an artist with 20 years of practice), an arts educator (having taught art history and sculpture in Universities for more than 25 years) and as an international arts reviewer for national arts journals (over the past 20 years).

Brian Tucker CPA

Treasurer
(he / him / his)

Brian is a CPA accountant, recently retired after forty years practice as Brian Tucker Accounting, a firm specialising in the provision of accounting, taxation and auditing services to the arts community. That community included individual practitioners, small arts companies, both commercial and not-for-profit, and Indigenous Art Centres from Mornington Island to the Mornington Peninsula, many in very remote communities – such as Tjuntjuntjara in the Great Victoria Desert, a 1270km drive from Alice Springs – in the Central and Western Deserts, the Kimberley, Arnhem Land and the Tiwi Islands. He also has wide experience as a board or committee member of over forty organisations such as Umbrella, from the large (Queensland Performing Arts Centre) to the tiny (Queensland Poets Society), usually, of course, as the Treasurer. He also has a large collection of art.

Susan Peters Nampitjin

Board Member
(she / her / hers)

Susan Peters Nampitjin is a contemporary artist of the Walmajarri people (Tanami desert of South East Kimberleys, Western Australia), who has been based in Townsville for many years. She was born on Argyle station in 1963 near the banks of the Behn River, and lived there with her family, who worked as jackaroos, stockmen, camp cooks, yard builders, and fencers. In her youth she moved to Queensland. She comes from a family of painters. Her Indigenous culture is often reflected in contemporaneous pictorials of bush plants, foods, medicine and native ecology. Through her wider art practice she experiments with a range of art media and traditions ranging from painting to printmaking. The artist's work is held in notable Australian collections including Artbank, National Gallery of Australia, Townsville Hospital and Perc Tucker Regional Gallery. In 2021 she won the Innovation Award at the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair. 

Lydia Rigano

Board Member
(she / her / hers)

Lydia is a clinical psychologist and small business owner who has called Townsville home for around 20-years. She contributes strong skills in governance and communication to the board, having previously been on non-profit boards.

COVID Safe Visits

Umbrella asks that visitors adhere to social distancing, visitor logs, and other COVID Safe directives and procedures as directed.

More COVID Information

Open Hours

Tues - Fri: 9am-5pm

Sat - Sun: 9am-1pm

Gallery closed Mondays, public holidays and during exhibition install weeks.

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Contact

(07) 4772 7109

408 Flinders Street,
Gurambilbarra (Townsville),
Qld, 4810 Australia

PO Box 2394,
Gurambilbarra (Townsville),
Qld, 4810 Australia

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Acknowledgement of Country

Umbrella Studio Contemporary Arts respectfully acknowledges the Wulgurukaba of Gurambilbarra and Yunbenun and the surrounding groups of our region - Bindal, Gugu Badhan, Nywaigi, Warrgamay, Bandjin and Gudjal - as the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we gather, share and celebrate local creative practice. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging. We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as the first people of Australia. They have never ceded sovereignty and remain strong in their enduring connection to land and Culture.

Umbrella is a Dealer Member of the Indigenous Art Code. This means we are committed to fair and ethical trade with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, and transparency in the promotion and sale of artwork. As a Dealer Member and signatory to the Code we must act fairly, honestly, professionally and in good conscience in all direct or indirect dealings with artists.

Acknowledgements

Umbrella is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, part of the Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy, and by the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, state and territory governments. | Umbrella is supported by the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation and receives funds through the Australian Cultural Fund. | Townsville City Council is a funding partner of Umbrella's program.