Executive and Curatorial Biographies
Blair French Chief Executive Officer. Blair is an arts leader, curator and writer who has held curatorial and management roles at a range of key organisations: Australian Centre for Photography, Performance Space, Artspace (where he was Executive Director 2006-13) and most recently Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (Director, Curatorial and Digital). Blair has a PhD from University of Sydney and has taught in universities in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand, as well as publishing extensively. He was also President of Contemporary Arts Organisations Australia, a formal nationwide network of contemporary art spaces, from 2006 until 2009. As a curator Blair has initiated and developed solo exhibitions and performances with a wide and diverse range of artists from Australia and around the world. He was curatorial convenor of the 6th (2010 – 2011) and curator of the 7th (2013) iterations of SCAPE Public Art: Christchurch Biennial, and one of the initiators and co-curators of the first edition of The National: New Australian Art presented at Art Gallery of New South Wales, Carriageworks and MCA in 2017.
Vanessa Duscio Director, Communications & Partnerships. Vanessa has helped shaped the agenda in media, marketing, content and fundraising for a range of Australia’s leading arts organisations and brands, including Carriageworks, Sydney Opera House and The Australian Ballet. As a member of the Executive team, Vanessa is responsible for growing investment and extending Carriageworks’ national and international profile. She leads a team in the execution of strategies reflecting the Artistic Program and is responsible for marketing, communications, development, ticketing and visitor experience.
Daniel Mudie Cunningham Director, Programs. Daniel has worked as a curator, writer and artist for more than two decades. He has held curatorial roles at Artbank and Hazelhurst Art Gallery, and teaching and research positions at Western Sydney University, where he completed his PhD in cultural studies in 2004. Daniel is a widely published arts writer and cultural critic with a focus on contemporary Australian art practice. Notable recent projects include curating The National 2019: New Australian Art at Carriageworks and Space YZ at Campbelltown Arts Centre in 2021; initiating the Katthy Cavaliere Fellowship which partnered Carriageworks with ACCA and Mona; and leading the curatorial delivery of a major public art strategy tied to the redevelopment of Sydney’s South Eveleigh precinct with artists Jonathan Jones, Chris Fox and Nell.
Kri Leitner Director, Events & Production. Kri solves complex problems creatively. But what moves her the most is strategic management and execution by aligning resources with vision and strategy and transforming ideas and plans into action. As Director of Events and Production, Kri’s focus is on developing opportunities, strengthening operations and ensuring the team are strong working toward common objectives and intended outcomes/results.
Andrew Demetriou Director, Commercial. Andrew is an experienced commercial and arts leader having worked in diverse management roles for Australia’s largest banks before following his passion for the arts. Andrew has worked with leading arts and cultural organisations, previously at the Australian Centre for Photography before joining Carriageworks where he leads commercial strategy and business development, major event partnerships and venue hire. Andrew is also Vice Chair of FORM Dance projects, a leading presenter of independent performance art. He holds a Bachelor of Business and MBA completed at UTS, Sydney and Tongji University, Shanghai as recipient of the Australian Government’s AsiaBound scholarship, and has studied and worked across Asia and Europe. Andrew is committed to supporting artists and creatives develop cultural, social and economic outcomes.