Meet the team
Membership Coordinator - Miranda Wells
Miranda coordinates the Bristol studio. She is an artist and workshop facilitator, specialising in arts and health. She has a Fine Art background and holds a Psychology BSc. She has experience working within galleries, community, mental health and education settings.
Studio Manager - Alex Wride
Alex is an Art Psychotherapist and a Design Technology teacher. He graduated with a distinction form the University of South Wales and won an award for his dissertation on the personal boundaries of Art Therapists who work at Studio Upstairs.
Studio Manager - Sharon Lewis
Sharon is a qualified Art Psychotherapist and artist with substantial experience of creative communities, education and health settings.
Studio Manager - Hilary Rapp
As well as working for Studio Upstairs, Hilary leads a weekly open studio group offering psychological support for adults and their carers who are coping with a serious medical condition. When living and working for twenty years in Asia, she also volunteered with YMCA tsunami medical relief team to Sri Lanka.
Following that, she then worked with individuals in palliative care at Marie Curie Hospice, London. As an Art Therapist Researcher in Singapore, she designed & implemented a pilot study to explore effects of art therapy on levels of anxiety & depression in adults of multiple ethnicities at the end of life.
Studio Manager - Katherine Engel
Katherine is a qualified and HCPC registered Art Therapist with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art & Visual Culture from the University of West of England. She has been with Studio Upstairs since 2013 and currently manages on a Thursday. Alongside this Katherine currently teaches at Bristol City College on the Creative Arts Therapies Foundation Degree course as well as working in private practice in Bristol, Somerset and Frome. She has extensive experience working in mental health, trauma and sexual abuse and violence. She also is interested in meditation and mindfulness practice and the application of these to both therapy and artistic practice.
Administrator - Dan Murphy
Dan is a BA Hons graduate (Film, Radio & Television Production with Media & Cultural Studies), graduate of the Royal Court Theatre’s Young Writer’s Group and invite only Studio Group.
His experience includes work within NHS, Shine TV and Almeida Theatre
Senior Studio Manager - David Fried
A registered HCPC art therapist, David has been working as a Senior Manager for Studio Upstairs since 2006 having previously worked as a Studio Manager and volunteer. David studied Fine Art BA (Hons) at Middlesex Polytechnic. He is a MA Postgraduate at the Royal College of Art and Art Therapy graduate at St. Alban School of Art. He has over twenty five years of experience in the field and also works part-time as an art therapist within the NHS facilitating a variety of art therapeutic groups and working with inpatients.
Studio Manager - Shahla Isfahani
Shahla is an HCPC registered Art Therapist and BAAT member. She joined Studio in 2008 and has many years of experience working with adults and adolescents in various settings, including NHS Trusts and charity organizations.
She is currently working with refugees who are survivors of human rights abuse while also a visiting tutor at Hertfordshire University for foundation and MA art therapy students.
Shahla has won the ‘Art Therapy Essay Prize Competition’ awarded by BAAT and Taylor & Francis publications and published her article in the International Journal of Art therapy: Inscape (2008).
Studio Manager - Helen Omand
Helen is a HCPC registered art therapist and an artist. Helen has been involved with the Studio Upstairs since 2007 and also has experience working in both NHS and educational settings. Most recently she has worked on a multidisciplinary research project at University College London using images with adults with chronic pain.
Helen has a background in film making and video and has facilitated arts in health projects, community arts projects and given workshops for training art therapists.
Studio Manager - Fiona Toth-Gillies
Fiona qualified in Art Therapy at the La Trobe University, Melbourne. She has experience from wide range of settings and previously worked at the London Studio as a volunteer and cover manager.
Studio Manager - Oliver Campbell
Oliver works in both SU London branches. He is an HCPC registered Art Therapist working across NHS, school and community settings. Oliver is also a member of Lewisham Art House.
Studio Manager - Kristina Page
Kristina is a qualified Art Psychotherapist, supervisor, and an artist. She has worked for many years with people who are experiencing homelessness, as well as with addiction and mental health issues. Kristina also works at the Royal Academy with families with children who have special educational needs, and at Claremont Project with older adults. She runs the life drawing sessions at Studio Upstairs and is currently training in group analysis.
Performance Group Manager - Erene Kaptani
Erene is a HCPC registered art therapist, performer and researcher. She has been working with Studio Upstairs since 2008. Erene uses theatre to question constructions of identities, institutional and public communications as well as creating spaces/events for debate and interaction among different audiences.
Erene is a member of Playback South theatre company and has been published in several journals and is associate artist with UEL.
Project Coordinator - Jemma Curry
Jemma is responsible for coordination of the South London studio and Gallery. A Fine Art graduate, she has over 15 years experience in the not-for-profit sector and a keen interest in international development and community arts.
Administrator - Katrine Stolsnes
Katrine is an administrator and bookkeeper for two branches of Studio Upstairs. She has a MA in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy and a BA in Cultural Project Management. Katrine has a wide experience with administrative and marketing work from festivals and art organisations. Besides working for Studio Upstairs, she also works as the administrator for the art community organisation Art4Space.
Studio Manager - Aisling Fegan
Aisling is an HCPC Registered Art Psychotherapist with experience of working with a diverse range of settings. She is also a Senior Dementia Advisor for the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and part of a team working with the Grenfell/ Latimer Community.
Studio Manager - Sue Rendell
Sue is a qualified Art Therapist and workshop facilitator. She has extensive experience working with Adult Mental health, Adolescent and Child services. Besides working for Studio Upstairs, Sue also works with Older Adults who have Dementia and with their carers in the community. Sue co-facilitates an Art therapy group in the community and an 'Art for Wellbeing 'group that works directly from drawing in nature.
Studio Manager - Oliver Campbell
Oliver works in both SU London branches. He is an HCPC registered Art Therapist working across NHS, school and community settings. Oliver is a member of Lewisham Art House.
Trustee/ Director/ Chair of the Board: Keith Miller
Keith has over 40 years’ experience in banking and finance dealing with SME’s and larger businesses. He developed a specialism in supporting larger charities with their banking requirements before moving into the not for profit sector where he has been supporting businesses become finance ready to start and grow. He has over ten years’ experience of sitting on loan panels and is ACIB qualified.
Trustee/ Director: Ben Wright
Ben has 20 years’ experience in a variety of marketing and revenue generation roles including developing strategies and running programmes for market positioning and branding. He is passionate about the benefits of therapy to mental health and also paints on a regular basis.
Trustee/ Director: Edwige Russell
Edwige is ACA qualified and holds a Master degree in Accounting, Management Accounting and Audit. She has more than 7 years of experience working in public practices or in industry. She is specialised in in the financial services sector and is a technical expert in internal audit methodologies and in risk management. Edwige has an interest in arts and spends her free time visiting art galleries and museums.
Trustee/ Director: Alex Holmes
Alex is Head of Administration and Finance for the University of Oxford Department of Paediatrics, and has worked in clinical teaching and research departments within the University for more than ten years. Prior to this he worked clinically as a Registered Nurse in acute Trauma and Respiratory Medicine settings, and has worked in finance and management in public and private sector settings including charities and industry. He holds a bachelors degree in Adult Nursing and a post-graduate Diploma in Higher Education Administration, Management, and Leadership, and is an Accredited Member of the Association of University Administrators. As well as an interest in art, Alex is a performing musician and writer.
Managing Director/ Company Secretary : Zlatinka Hristova
Zlatinka is an artist, arts manager and curator. Her work experience spans directorships in the private sector, teaching, mentoring and arts management. She holds two Fine Art degrees, PGCE, MA in Arts Policy and Management (Birkbeck) and Group Work Diploma (IGA).