Curatorial Speed Mentoring

  • Region: North West
  • Type: Workshop
  • Cost: Free

Would you like to seek professional advice and discuss the next steps for your career with an experienced art curator?

  • Event: Friday 9 February
  • Application deadline: Wednesday 31 January
  • Location: Whitworth Gallery, Manchester

On Friday 9 February, 11-1pm (with tea and coffee 10.30am) the Association for Art History will host a mentoring event for art curators at the Whitworth Gallery, Manchester. This speed mentoring event is part of the Association’s initiative to support curators and curatorial practice in the UK. It is organised by the Association’s Curatorial Committee. Mentees will engage in four 15-minute one-to-one meetings with esteemed colleagues in the curatorial field.

Our mentors for this session include Dominic Bilton, Queering the Whitworth curator, The Whitworth, Leanne Green, Head of Exhibitions and Displays, Tate Liverpool, Hannah Williamson, Curator, Fine Art, Manchester Art Gallery and Xiaowen Zhu, Director, esea contemporary.


Dominic Bilton is a Project Producer who currently leads on Queering the Whitworth, a project which interrogates the gallery’s collection from a non-normative perspective, in order to (re)discover missing LGBTQIA+ narratives associated with either the artist or the artwork. Dominic co-curated the participatory exhibition (Un)Defining Queer at the Whitworth, which opened on 26 January 2023 in partnership with the LGBT Foundation. Dominic’s research interests are in the innovative ‘constituent museum’ approach to museum practice, where he is investigating what queer theory’s non-normative approach to gender, sexuality and identity offers to current debates in participatory museology.

Leanne Green is Head of Exhibitions and Displays at Tate Liverpool. Previously she was Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Whitworth, The University of Manchester where she curated Traces of Displacement (2023) Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind: Familiar Phantoms (2023), Suzanne Lacy: What Kind of City? (2021-22) Forensic Architecture: Cloud Studies (2021), A Useful Pursuit of Shadows (2021), Pearl Alcock (2019) and Exchanges I and II (2018-19). Before that she was Assistant Curator at the Whitworth and held a curatorial position at Henry Moore Institute, Leeds. She has a PhD in Visual Culture from Manchester School of Art and holds an MA in Art Gallery and Museum Studies from University of Leeds.

Hannah Williamson has been a Curator of Fine Art at Manchester Art Gallery since 2010. Hannah has been a Curator of Fine Art at Manchester Art Gallery since 2010. She specialises in British fine art from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. She has spent her career in museums, working in a variety of roles for Tate, the National Trust and Hat Works, the hat museum in Stockport. She is a Trustee of the Silk Museum in Macclesfield, Cheshire. Hannah is also in the third year of her part-time study for a PhD at Manchester Metropolitan University. She is studying the Horsfall Collection, which was formed for an educational museum in Ancoats, Manchester, and her research centres on John Ruskin, class, gender and ghosts in the museum.  

Xiaowen Zhu is Director of esea contemporary, the UK’s only non-profit art centre specialising in presenting and platforming artists and art practices that identify with and are informed by East and Southeast Asian (ESEA) cultural backgrounds. Xiaowen Zhu has worked internationally in Shanghai, New York, Los Angeles, London and Berlin as a director, author and lecturer. She was previously Assistant Director at Times Art Center Berlin and has conceived exhibitions with established and emerging artists from all over the world. Zhu is the author of Oriental Silk (Hatje Cantz, 2020) and Encounters (Shanghai Educational Publishing House, 2022). Zhu has been featured in Apollo magazine’s 2022 list of 40 Under 40 Asia Pacific Thinkers.

How to apply

Applications are open to anyone working in the curatorial field. If you are interested in being considered for a mentoring slot, please complete this application form and email it to Places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis as registration forms are returned.

Application deadline: 31 January

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