The retiring Chair has overseen a successful period of change in a-n’s history, beginning with the recruitment of a-n Director Jeanie Scott in 2014, following the departure of a-n co-founder Sue Jones, to the recruitment of a-n CEO Julie Lomax in 2018. Jayne played a significant role in the launch of a-n’s influential Paying Artists campaign and has contributed towards successful applications to Arts Council England. Jayne’s leadership guided a-n through the challenges of Covid-19, supporting staff to develop new ways of working and distribute over £2.5m in emergency funds to artists.
Jayne took over as Chair from Esther Salamon in 2011, but her relationship with a-n as a valued ambassador for the organisation began years earlier. a-n was a key partner in Making Art Work – a professional development scheme for artists, which Jayne developed with artists in Suffolk in 2000, before joining a-n as a trustee in 2004.
As Chair of a-n, Jayne helped to transform a-n from a magazine to a professional membership organisation. Jayne encouraged the open recruitment of a new, diverse and inclusive Board of trustees, setting the precedent for a Board that reflects the values and ambitions of a-n and ensures artists are central to its governance. a-n introduced the first Visual Arts Clore Fellowship in 2016 and was elected as the UK committee for International Association of Art (IAA) in 2017.
Jayne Knight said:
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with the a-n Board and team through multiple changes. a-n is a dynamic organisation that shifts and adapts, always holding on to its core mission: to support artists. I’m immensely proud of the significant work a-n continues to deliver; from its campaigns to secure fairer payment for artists, to building a Board that sets the bar for governance in the arts and ensures that the issues that matter to artists are debated long and hard. Mostly, I want to thank everyone that I have worked with at a-n for their passion, tenacity and hard work and of course, to the a-n members, who are the heartbeat of this unique organisation.”
a-n CEO Julie Lomax said:
“From the moment I began at a-n, I have had the pleasure of working with Jayne’s encouragement and guidance. Her fair and considered leadership style has engaged the a-n Board in robust discussion and debate and has created a culture that is bold, caring and able to respond to challenges. Through clear and calm direction, Jayne helped a-n navigate a global pandemic and leaves us in an extremely strong position with a growing membership of more than 29,000 artists. Jayne’s dedication and appreciation for artists, the organisation and staff has continually inspired me.”
The new Chair of a-n will be announced in 2023.
Top image: a-n Board 2022. Left to right: Anjalika Sagar, Keith Piper, Jayne Knight, Thomas Goddard, Reema Selhi, Zarah Hussain, Hannah Wallis, Jerome Ince-Mitchell, Helen Nisbet, Clémentine Bedos. Photo: Joel Chester Fildes.