Staff & Board

If you have an enquiry and would like to contact East Street Arts, please see the list of staff below for the relevant member of staff. This will allow us to handle your enquiry more efficiently. You can also read a little more about the people who make up the East Street Arts team.


Karen Watson, Artistic Director

The co-founder of East Street arts, Karen focuses on the artistic direction of the company and is part of the team that sets our vision and strategy. She is interested in art’s role within society and supporting artists to work within all aspects of city developments.


Jon Wakeman, Artistic Director

Jon Wakeman is a co-founder of East Street Arts and worked voluntarily with his co-founder from 1993 to 2000 with both having to share the roles and responsibilities that the company needed to survive and grow. In 2003 he led, the now charity, through a £1.6 million capital development to convert St Patrick Social Club in Burmantofts, Leeds into Patrick Studios a centre for creative production and engagement and the organisations administrative hub. Jon believes in being able to empower people to change their lives, the tool for this happens to be creativity. However he also believes there is a need to have a financial element within this and people can make successful businesses, companies and projects through their art. Graduating from Sunderland University in 1992, after studying Glass and Ceramics, Jon moved to Leeds and between 1996 – 2000 completed an MA in Fine Art at Sheffield Hallam University. Outside of the company he is now starting to do his own artwork again which also enables him to be part of the artist’s community he is supporting. He is a bit of a geek and has embraced social media especially after reading books such as We Think by Charles Ledbetter and Wikinomics by Don Tapscott and Anthony Williams. He is an avid football fan, supporting hometown team York City.
Driving into Europe, via Hull, is his holiday destination of choice; flea markets and junk shops; café bars and art organisations; being lost in cities, surrounded by unknown sights and sounds.


Nicola Greenan, External Relations Director

Nicola was born in Scotland and raised in Seacroft, Leeds. Nicola went back to her roots in 2009 and spent 5 years dedicated to creating the wonderful LS14 Trust and Nicola will always know someone who might know somebody else who might be able to help. She is fascinated by new politics and the space between big P and little p. Nicola loves dogs with a passion, especially her labrador retriever Milo. Nicola has a talented daughter who is hoping to study fine art in Gronningen, which will hopefully mean lots more visits to Holland. Nicola is getting married in 2016 in Barcelona!


Lester Drake, Systems Coordinator

Lester has been charged with streamlining the way we operate, helping us share information and introducing efficiencies, so that all the staff can better care for our community. Outside of this he is getting all theoretical on a Masters in Critical & Cultural Theory. He also runs Assembly House in Armley and Lady Beck in Mabgate, studios spaces with galleries, which aim to support graduate retention and encouraging continued learning within Leeds creative community.



Liz Riley, Workspace Manager

Liz is an artist based at Patrick Studios, teacher at Leeds College of Art and a Studio & Membership Coordinator at East Street Arts. Her practice is very much interdisciplinary but is rooted in interactive, sculptural metalwork and contemporary jewellery. Liz has a very practical approach and enjoys problem solving and collaborating with a diverse range of people, to find creative solutions. She loves to make things and also make things happen including setting up, running, managing and teaching in specialist workshops and workspaces. Liz is excited to be part of an organisation that inspires personal, social development, change and progression through the arts.


Ann Rutherford, Temporary Spaces Manager

Ann has been working as an artist since the age of 16 when she wandered the streets of Limpsfield in Surrey offering to draw peoples houses for money. After college she worked as a commercial interior designer and museum exhibition designer for the British Museum. Now thoroughly embedded in Yorkshire, she worked for Redman Design before setting up her own business. With great relief she returned to paid employment in 2008 after completing an MA in printmaking and PGC in photography. Ann loves a bit of cycling, walking and exploring. Ann is also a mother of 3 and likes a challenge.


Fran Bundey, Project Co-ordinator: Temporary Spaces

Fran graduated from the University of Hull’s Scarborough Campus in 2013. Since then she has worked as a Production/Art Department Assistant in films and at the Royal Court Theatre in London. She was drawn back home to Leeds and is hoping to make an impact in the arts community in Leeds in any way she can. She likes playing with vocal loop stations to make music using beat boxing, iPad apps and weird noises. Fran finds work that happens in unconventional spaces really exciting, and she’s incredibly interested in how a temporary space can inspire and inform artists’ work or processes.


Ella Cronk, Temporary Spaces and Artist Coordinator

Ella chose to move to Leeds for a whole load of reasons- notably art and beer. At East Street Arts, she’s all about providing artists with affordable space to make and show work, and helping bring together artistic communities. She loves it when there are lots of people making art together. On that note, when she isn’t here she is part of an artist led co-operative space called serf, making art herself.



Nathan Evans, Website Administrator

Nathan is our website administrator, developer and self proclaimed morale officer. He is also an illustrator and muralist who specialises in hand lettering and recently completed the ‘Hello & Welcome To Leeds’ mural at Leeds Kirkgate Market. Nathan graduated from Sheffield Hallam University in 2010 with a degree in Graphic Design specialising in Illustration and has been operating as a freelancer ever since.


Rob Jameson, Graphic Designer

Rob is the in-house graphic designer. Spending most of his days playing on Adobe InDesign and Illustrator, he designs everything from banners to books to badges. Away from East Street Arts, Rob can usually be found cutting and sticking as a collage artist and illustrator, flicking through kid’s picture books, staring at Brutalist architecture, or playing football to a magnificently low standard.


Daisy Robson Wright, Creative Content Co-ordinator

You would have thought that as the voice of social media, Daisy would be good at writing about herself. It turns out this is more difficult than Daisy anticipated, and so… If she’s not behind a computer or camera, find her at the pub with a pint and surrounded by snacks!

Union 105:

Lotte Shaw, Programme Manager (Union 105) / 0113 2626633

Lotte is the Programme Manager at Union105, our studio facility and project space based in Chapeltown. She graduated from Leeds Met in 2008 with a degree in Fine Art and has lived in Leeds ever since. Alongside work at East Street Arts, Lotte has spent the last three years working in a Cooperative who run a DIY event space and bar in Leeds called Wharf Chambers.


Elaine Barrow, Learning Manager / 0113 2626633

Elaine is the Learning Manager here at ESA, she has spent the past 4 years looking after our Adult Learning Programme, engaging with diverse groups city wide, her role expanded a year or so ago and now includes work with young people, children, schools and one off projects for artists, as well as collaborating with creative partners.

Elaine is based between our main site at Patrick Studios and one of our smaller spaces, Union 105, her interests include photography, clever design, the Spanish language and performance arts.

Board Members:

Dee Reid
Felix Odeh
Gillian Holding
Helen Macrow
Jeremy Wilson
Jonathan Wilson
Julia Skelton
Kristal Ireland
Nick Dyson
Alan Dunn