Artists in Residence 2023/2024

Artist Biographies

Alex Billingham (she/they)


Alex Billingham

Alex uses their lived experience of being disabled, trans, and neurodiverse to consider better modes of survival, combining Live Art / Experimental theatre and film / digital work within their practice. They've performed for Tate St Ives and have work in The New Art Gallery Walsall’s permanent collection where they are currently preparing for a major duo show in 2024.

Alex joins the researchers Jianbo Jiao (Computer Science), Ole Jensen (Psychology) and Cai Wingfield (Advanced Research Computing) for the ‘Spatio-temporal Dynamic in Human Brain and Artificial Neural Network’ project.

Alex is working on the Seedcorn project “Spatio-temporal Dynamic in Human Brain and Artificial Neural Network”. 

Art by Alex Billingham

Alex’s sculpture artwork showing an open hand surrounded by a circle of colourful balls.
An image of Alex’s exhibition with inflatable palm trees and animals and people dressed as mermaids.
An image of Alex dressed as a mermaid on the beach holding a stereo.

Emily Scarrott


Emily profile photo

Emily is an artist, writer and researcher based in Birmingham and the Black Country, currently completing an art practice-led PhD. Emily is particularly interested in making durational and unstated performances which are informed by an ongoing preoccupation with science fiction and a curiosity in how we might practice desired worlds into being through a reimagining of care.

Emily is also excited by co-operative and horizontal forms of working. Some of her favourite ways that she has explored this are through membership of Black Hole Club, an artist group recently taking inspiration from slime mould and co-authorship, anarchic open call submissions with Dinosaur Kilby, and sitting on the Artist Citizens Jury to interrogate the broken pipeline of UK practice-based research funding. Throughout Emily’s work, she seeks survival through experimental methodologies and collaborative exchanges of ideas to displace an authoritative distribution of knowledge.

Emily’s significant achievements include exhibited or performed works at Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, Tate Liverpool and Deptford X Fringe, London. She received the Ikon Gallery Prize in 2018 and undertook a residency in the Atacama Desert, Chile in 2022. Emily is working on the Seedcorn project “Developing Early Diagnostic Methods for Autism using MEG and Novel Graph Neural Network”.


Art by Emily Scarrott

A damaged egg in cloth on the ground.
A person wrapped in a bright green body bag on the ground in the desert.

Felicity Inkpen


Felicity Inkwell

The combination of art and science has been key to Felicity’s life and work. 
Until April 2022, she prioritised science and maintained art part-time.

Having gained a master’s degree in physics, and scientific publishing experience, Felicity went on to pursue the Wellcome Trust Neural Dynamics PhD programme at the University of Bristol. Here, she developed skills in experimental and computational neuroscience, applying biophysical approaches to examine neuron development.

During this time, Felicity presented her debut solo exhibition, L’Appel Du Vide, which explored through 2D artworks the psychological phenomenon of ‘The Call of the Void’, manifested as a sudden desire to perform an act of self-destruction. The exhibition examined psychological and personal interpretations alongside corresponding interpretations from folklore.

In 2019 she began a postdoc at the lab of Prof. Peter Kind, developing in-vivo calcium imaging techniques to explore postnatal development in autism, and computational approaches to solve data analysis problems. In April 2022, she made art her primary focus. Figurative and representative drawing and painting form a large part of her artistic output. Felicity’s practice asks questions about how the mind processes the world. Meticulous, analytical attention to detail and observation are recurring themes of her practice. Her images are surprising, subversive, and beautiful. Felicity is inspired by natural forms, and the physical and biological principles that underpin their formation.

Previous work has explored the combination of botanical illustration with pharmacology, the experience of covid-anxiety, and number-colour synaesthesia. For her painting exploring synaesthesia, Felicity was awarded the March 2023 John Byrne Award. Felicity is working on the Seedcorn project “Harnessing endothelial cells to help boost the efficacy of immunotherapy to eradicate primary liver cancer”.


Art by Felicity Inkpen

Artwork on a wall of five bees.
Picture of Felicity’s studio wall with various art pieces.

Shannel James

Shannel profile photo

Shannel James is a passionate visual artist based in the West Midlands. In this realm of creativity, sustainability and the merging of cultures, this is what defines her artistic heartbeat. Fuelled by a love for blending art and culture, she transforms second hand British vintage furniture, combining it with traditional African fabric to create vibrant canvases of expression where restoration and textiles interlace to breathe life into forgotten tales and ignite the flames of storytelling.

This year has been a testament to the growth of her artistic soul, pushing her creative boundaries to new horizons. Three unique pieces emerged from the depths of her imagination, each graced the spotlight at three separate exhibitions. The very first, titled 'Second Chance,' unravelled a tale of British colonialism in Africa, this piece celebrated the beauty of cultures coming together, harmoniously, instead of dwelling on the negatives of the past. 'A Seat at the Table' followed, and it was a single armchair upholstered with a resplendent Kente print. This masterpiece served as a poignant reminder there is ample room for every creative soul at the grand feast of artistic expression.

Lastly, 'Where Do I Belong' emerged as her most vulnerable creation, delving into the profound theme of migration and its generational impact. This heartfelt piece resonates with the struggles and triumphs of those seeking their place in this world. Shannel transformed them into gateways of history, compassion, and unity. As these pieces stood proudly accompanied by a poem, they whispered stories of the past and dreams of the future, embodying the spirit of artistic exploration. Shannel is working on the Seedcorn project “Place-Based Early Detection and Prediction Modelling for Psychosis (PEPP)”.


Art by Shannel James

Refurbished chest of draws with coloured draws.
Refurbished chair with multicoloured seat cushion.
Refurbished chest of draws covered in multicoloured patterns.

Vicky Roden


Vicky profile photoVicky is a multi-disciplinary artist with a socially engaged practice encompassing a variety of media including textiles, embroidery, taxidermy and Live Art. Primarily focussing on the sinister and archaic, much of her work explores death, ritual, and points where women have historically found personal power and agency.

She finds the development of folklore and mythology to be a peculiarly satisfying aspect to explore, using local tales and odd snippets of information as the basis to create legendary objects and stories. The use of embroidery, both literally and figuratively, is central to her practice with embellishment being one of the most fundamentally human characteristics.

Much of Vicky’s work has a very definite historical element, mostly in relation to social history and everyday objects such as coins, photographs, books and other such ephemera whose value has evaporated over the passage of time. Her current focus is on anonymous human remains within collections and how we present and relate to them in the modern age.

She tends to develop projects through making, and as such usually develop a body of work for each project. Vicky is currently working on More Than Human, and Arts Council England funded DYCP project looking at human remains in museum collections and how we relate to them in the modern age.

Vicky is working on the Seedcorn project, “An innovative computational approach to accelerate the development of synthetic extracellular vesicles for therapeutic applications”.


Art by Vicky Roden

A glass plate on a stand with glass figurines, intended as a game.
A framed picture of “Digbeth is the next Shoreditch” embroidery.
A close up of a glass figurine used in a game.

Simon Peter Green


SimoSimon profile photon is an artist photographer with an interest in social documentary, portraiture, visual sociology, environment and representation and aims to represent people in a dignified and progressive way.

In 2020, Simon was awarded a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Photography (1st) at Coventry University. In 2022, he was awarded a Master of Fine Arts Photography (Distinction) at The University for the Creative Arts, and founded the multi-media photography show, Un_Asked, in a creative partnership with Xuesheng Ma. He was the founder and production director of the London Street Photography Festival, where he championed young people, under-represented minorities and women. His work has been featured in exhibitions, published in newspapers, magazines and online.

Simon also worked as a production and event manager, mostly in the music industry. His time was spent as an international tour and production manager working with “A” list artists such as Wu- Tang Clan, Pusha T, Duke Dumont, Maya Jane Coles, TY, Kanye West, Desiigner, Jammer BBK, Jax Jones, Kellie Leigh and many others.

He worked as a tutor in formal and informal environments, for example, at Salisbury Art College, The Princes Trust, BBC Blast, the National Portrait Gallery, and many others. Simon also tutored DJ collectives with learning difficulties for Bournemouth and Poole People First (Mix-It- Up DJ’s and Grape Vine Coventry (New Vibes DJ and Visuals), and is an occasional DJ providing DJ services for West Ham United at the London Stadium.

Simon is working on the Seedcorn project “Distributed embodied timing in DJing”.

Art by Simon Peter Green

Six men wearing black standing behind a DJ deck.
A man DJ-ing in a colourful tent.

Ian Andrews


Ian Andrews

Ian is excited and committed to trans-disciplinary projects believing it is crucial to develop a “creative curiosity” in audiences and participants that transcends barriers between specialisms.

He co-founded the community arts group In-Public in 2016 and ran arts engagement projects with a range of partners including Birmingham Children’s Hospital, Midlands Arts Centre, The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Mencap, Primary and secondary schools nationally and delivered for “Live Age” organised by the Young Vic Theatre, Keele University and Age UK celebrating creativity in old age in 2019 culminating at The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery.

A residency at the University of Birmingham working with Prof Nikolopoulos from the particle physics group in 2018 changed Ian’s life as an artist. It made transformational changes to his practice, creating the project The sketchbook and the Collider. Since then, Ian has delivered 35 workshops and 12 major exhibition/events, including an event at the Forum Exposition Bonlieu, Annecy, France in October 2022. “Reality is not what it seems,” attracted 900 visitors during its three-week run.

The exhibitions, events and workshops associated with the project overall have now exceeded 6000 visitor- participants with an on-line audience taking the audience beyond 20,000. Following the exhibition in France he was invited to talk at the International Particle Physics Outreach Group 25th annual conference at CERN in Geneva.

Recently The Sketchbook and the Collider was recognised by the prestigious Pollock-Krasner Foundation in the USA and is in receipt of a grant to develop new work!

Ian is working on the N-Code project “EEG Biomarkers of Circadian Health”, to find out more please visit the N-CODE news website.

 Art by Ian Andrews

Simon drawing art on a wall
Close up of Simons art – a complex pencil drawing in black and white
Image of Simon’s gallery from above, showing art on the floor and walls

Anja Borowicz Richardson


Anna Borowicz

Anja Borowicz is an interdisciplinary artist, researcher, and collaborator whose work explores the intersections of sculpture, text, sound, and technology. With a further background in human engineering and an interest in performed materiality, Anja employs multimodal approaches to explore imaginary overlaps, empathetic states, and connections with different bodies and spaces.

She holds an MA in Fine Art from University College London and a PhD in Fine Art from the Royal College of Art. Her research project, Sculpting with Object-Gestures, explored the material resonances and poetic metaphors of everyday working gestures. It culminated in collaboration with a neuroscientist, creating GestureLabs - participatory installations where the public can respond to recorded body labour in a purpose-built booth.

Anja has collaborated on various projects like Smart Hans with Baltan Laboratories and Intimate Protest with DasHaus residency. She has also made contributions to several events, including Sauna Reading Group #6, The Listening Academy 2021, and the CARE(LESS) publication by MaBiblioteque. Her portfolio includes a podcast for Fermynwoods Contemporary Art, a soundscape for a Dao-inspired workshop at the Bangkok Biennial 2018, and performative sculptures for UrbanLab. Anja’s work has been recognised with the Kenneth Armitage Young Sculptor Prize and featured in Aesthetica Art Prize magazine. She has also been a visiting lecturer at various universities, including RCA, Liverpool Hope University, and Bath Spa University. Currently an honorary postdoctoral researcher with the Entanglement Research Group at RCA, Anja is expanding her knowledge in neurodiverse aesthetics.

Anja is working on the N-Code project “A wearable vibrotactile device to aid post-stroke rehabilitation”, to find out more please visit the N-CODE news website.

Art by Anna Borowicz Richardson

A public art installation demonstrating the effect of mirroring with a projector.

Andrea Mbarushimana


Andrea MbarushimanaAndrea is an artist and writer based in Coventry. Her third poetry pamphlet, Fatbergs was published in 2021 by KFS Press and she has published numerous poems and short stories in anthologies and literary magazines (litmags). Andrea is also an artist of many years standing. She has had solo exhibitions at the Herbert in Coventry and curated and workshopped public responses to British Museum touring exhibitions. Recent commissions include storytelling for The Museum of Me, producing an anthology of art and writing by neurodiverse teens for Grapevine Coventry and Warwickshire and an Artist on My Street commission from Coventry Artspace. A core poet for the BBC Contains Strong Language Festival in 2021, Andrea has performed on BBC Radio 3 and in front of audiences at the Belgrade and Albany Theatres in Coventry as well as headlining poetry nights across the UK and in Ireland.

With an MSc in Ecological Design, Andrea’s passion for science features in both her writing and art, as does her professional background in community connecting and working with diverse people from vulnerable groups. Her art and writing are analytical and strongly empathetic. Andrea is currently querying her first novel, which was sponsored by Arts Council England.

Andrea is working on the N-Code project “Can an Epilepsy chatbot improve outcomes for people with epilepsy?”, to find out more, please visit the N-CODE news website.


Art by Andrea Mbarushimana

Multicoloured painting with abstract lines, patterns and various colours.
A room that is an art exhibit displaying several tall white banners with art on the banners.
To find out more about the Seedcorn projects the artists are working on, please visit Round 4 of our Seedcorns projects page.