Hello Culture is an ongoing series of events that explore how digital technologies and media are disrupting the way cultural and heritage organisations produce, interact, create and curate content, by transforming how audiences can connect and engage with cultural experiences.

Meet Our Team

Hello Culture started as a collaboration between Big Cat Group and Lara Ratnaraja in 2011. In response to the ever changing cultural landscape it has grown to encompass new partners and collaborations with universities, policy bodies and cultural institutions, producers and artists. Hello Culture continues to demonstrate the agility and resilience it has been arguing are essential for cultural and arts organisations to develop by transforming its programme model in order to be responsive to the needs of the sector with conferences in 2011, 2012, 2014 and a Lab bringing together artists, arts organisations, academics and creative technologists to collaborate on new projects, co-curated by Lara Ratnaraja and Simon Whitehouse.

Lara Ratnaraja
Programme Curator

Lara is a freelance cultural consultant specialising in diversity, innovation, leadership, collaboration and cultural policy implementation within the HE, cultural and digital sector.

Chris Brown
Programme Co-Curator

Chris Brown is founder and editor of Polaroids and Polar Bears, a cultural guide to the West-Midlands and Staffordshire.

Clayton Shaw
Programme Co-Curator

Clayton is responsible for overall project delivery of STEAMhouse (Phase 1) and works closely with the team on areas of capital development, financial management, programme design and delivery, marketing and PR, strategic partnerships, research collaborations, and sector development.

Charmaine Stint
Programme Producer

Charmaine project manages large scale projects across Birmingham City University, primarily working alongside the Faculty of Arts, Design and Media and the Faculty for Computing, Engineering and Built Environment, bringing business and academia together.

Lucy Dusgate
Hello Culture Remix: MCR Co-producer

Lucy Dusgate produces the digital art programme for The Lowry, and is a freelance Creative Producer of cultural events and exhibitions. From 2012 until early 2019 she was Producer of the public realm cultural programme Quays Culture at Salford Quays/ MediaCityUK. Her experience includes new commissions and presentations across galleries, theatres, cinema and public spaces in the buildings and outdoor locations. She is experienced in working across performance, dance, digital art, music and visual art for venues, festivals, corporate partners and the public sector. Her work ranges from the intimate to the monumental, acting as a series of interventions and invitations to the public. She produces and curates local to international artistic talent in performance, visual arts and combined arts, as well as commissions that are site specific to unusual locations. Artists using technology in their practice are her specific specialism, as well as a broad knowledge in art programming for theatre, galleries, festivals and events. Examples of her productions include the exhibition ‘Right Here Right Now’, the exhibition ‘humansbeingdigital’, the Lyric theatre Week53 commission ‘IRIS’ by Marshmallow Laser Feast, outdoor stage performances by Motionhouse, six years as producer of Quays Culture which includes the annual Lightwaves Festival, Week 53 Festival commission ’30 Days of the Smiths’ by international author Jackie Kay, and theatre performance programming of talent such as Dasha Rush, Scanner, Herman Kolgen, Kurt d’Haeseleer and Shiva Feshareki. Lucy has previously worked across the cultural sector including: Arts Council England, The Royal Court Theatre, Institute of Contemporary Art, Battersea Arts Centre, Picturehouse Cinemas, Community Arts Northwest, Lime Arts in Health and Lumen Arts.

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