All sorts of artists are connected to Sputnik. I thought I’d compile a few of them in one place. Below is a selection of artists that we are featuring at an exhibition in Milton Keynes in June 2017, with a bit of an introduction and enough links to keep you occupied for quite some time.
We couldn’t include everyone in the exhibition though, so to check out others involved in our network, simply click here.
Jane Rosier/ Painter
I was formerly first soloist with Sadlers Wells Royal Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB), but upon retiring, retrained as a Scenic Artist at the Central School of Speech & Drama in Swiss Cottage, North London.
Presently, I work as a freelance painter, doing commissions as well as my own self initiated work.
I am part of Oasis Church, Birmingham and am involved in the Brum Sputnik Hub.
Sanju Karmacharya/ Graphic Designer
I am a creative and conceptual designer with a huge passion for minimalistic design. I have created visuals for both corporate and creative businesses and am currently working in the fashion industry as a graphic designer. This involves ensuring brand consistency in both print and online visual communication.
I am part of Churchcentral, Birmingham and am connected to the Brum Sputnik Hub. I am convinced that all art is Prophetic. So I attempt to communicate the beauty of the Creator and the brokenness of the world and use my art to invite people to explore hope.
Emma Bird/ Wire Sculptor
I started working in wire during an Art Foundation course prior to completing my degree in Applied Arts. This gave me the chance to enjoy manipulating materials more than simply drawing. I graduated with the university’s ceramics award but have returned to my love of wire as a professional artist producing work for galleries and through commissions.
I still draw and paint as well – particularly in church settings as part of worship or in prophesying. However, as an artist, my heart still lies in making and sculpting. Currently, I am producing a series for The Green Tree Gallery’s latest exhibition called ‘A British Summer’.
My work celebrates the beauty of creation, the people and animals that I see around me, as well as the interaction between them.
I always aim to be professional with both customers and galleries. Honouring these people is a priority. Celebrating creation is at the heart of my work and I hope in some way this may reflect the nature of the ultimate creator. I am part of Kings Church, Horsham.
David Benjamin Blower/ Singer-songwriter
I’m a writer and musician from Balsall Heath, Birmingham. I’ve recorded many albums, published several books, and I regularly speak and perform in different communities.
Recent highlights have been putting out my last book Sympathy for Jonah, collaborating with theologians N. T. Wright and Alastair McIntosh on a radiophonic production of the Book of Jonah itself, and creating liturgical sound collages for Nomad Podcast.
My music and writing has always been very theological. I’ve drawn on the tradition of the prophets in speaking truth to power; on the apocalyptic tradition, in finding creative language for historical moments of trauma and change; and on the early church, in offering work to encourage radical grass-roots communities of change.
What I love, is to make theological work that might expand and challenge the imaginations and practices of people inside and outside the church – and to find a common spiritual language between the two.
I am connected to the Brum Sputnik Hub.
Mike Lawetto/ Musician
As my day job I’m Mike Lawetto, a freelance producer, songwriter and mix engineer. When I’m not doing that, I split my time between Well Done You – my rock side and Perendiz – my pop side. For me, music is at its greatest when it’s screwed around with, messed expectations, a noisy evolution – that’s what makes it beautiful. And that’s how Well Done You and Perendiz came about.
Well Done You have recently released an EP, Part Wolf, that has been getting good airplay on Kerrang radio (with an album to follow later this year). Perendiz will also have a few singles, and possibly an EP coming out in 2017 too.
I am part of Christ Church, Manchester.
We are Midsummer – a six-strong musical collective, centred around the two singers and songwriters, Lizzy and Chris. We sing contemporary folk stories of life, loss and hope accompanied by guitars, mandolins, trumpets, accordions, strings and vocal harmonies.
We formed in Birmingham in 2015 and spend our time writing, recording and gigging with other bands and musicians in the local scene. We recently played a sold out gig at the Midlands Arts Centre with renowned Birmingham band Boat To Row.
We spent much of 2016 working on our debut album ‘The Stories You Tell’, which was released in spring 2017. It was picked up by Brum Radio as their album of the week, has had positive reviews in the local music press and has had national and international airplay on folk and Americana radio shows.
Our songs are simple but have a deceptive depth. We sing about a search for home, community, dealing with grief and personal loss; our songs tend of have an element of hope.
We are part of Oasis Church, Birmingham and are connected to the Brum Sputnik Hub.
Strange Ghost/ Musicians
Strange Ghost are the husband-wife duo Christopher & Ayomide Donald, who write and produce leftfield neo-soul music. Chris has produced music for various artists over the last ten years, while running the independent record label, Minor Artists, and moonlighting as a graphic designer. Ayomide grew up singing in gospel choirs, and makes a living as a sewing professional. Strange Ghost released their debut EP ‘Stagger’ this year – it’s a new venture, but one that draws on years of experience in and out of the industry. Minor Artists, meanwhile, is exploring crowd-funding and patronage as a way to break down the music industry into a more personable, approachable place.
The writer George Steiner says “ours is the long day’s journey of the [Easter] Saturday”. Our songs tell stories that are messy, and mired in the here and now, but which pull towards our faith in a better politics, ethics and kingdom to come on the Earth. Or as the the American rock band Thrice put it, “Wrap our knees in earth, wrap ourselves in light.”
We are part of Churchcentral, Birmingham and connected to the Brum Sputnik Hub.
Danielle Wilson/ Singer
I am a singer, part of Oasis Church, Birmingham and involved in the Brum Sputnik Hub.
Over the last ten years, I’ve performed as a backing vocalist with an all-female acoustic soul band called Eeek. Tight harmonies and thoughtful lyrics define our sound. The other ladies in the band are non-Christian lesbians, and it has been one of the great privileges of my life (as a straight, married Christian) to be loved by these women and welcomed in their community. Eeek has performed at Pride and LGBT events across the country and been the focus of feature articles in The Advocate and Diva Magazine. In March 2015, we released our first full length album titled ‘Love, Loss and Bowling’ which is available on itunes.
I find that being a backing vocalist is an act of submission, where your purpose is to blend your voice in support of the song and the lead singer, rather than try to stand out yourself. God has often used this as a picture of humility and submission in my spiritual life. Being in the band, has allowed me to act as a bridge-builder, or even a translator, helping Christians understand LGBT people, and helping LGBT people understand the motivations of Christians. I have had opportunities to tell some of the LGBT people I have known how much they are loved by God, but primarily God has used this experience to change and humble and soften me.
Mike French/ Author
My debut novel, The Ascent of Isaac Steward came out in 2011 with Cauliay Publishing and was nominated for The Galaxy National Book Awards (which presumably due to an unfortunate clerical error was awarded to Dawn French). This was followed by a dsytopian sci-fi called Blue Friday in 2012, and Convergence the following year.
In 2015, I released a hybrid novel & graphic novel called An Android Awakes with artist Karl Brown, which was launched from the main stage of The Brighton Film and Comic Con. I am presently working on the sequel Fictional Alignment and I will send the manuscript to my publishers in June (just finishing final edits). It will be published early 2018 by Elsewhen Press.
I was also the senior editor and owner of The View From Here literary magazine which closed in Nov 2014.
I help to run Perspective, which is a group that exists to encourage Christians working in or seeking to be active in the arts in Luton and the surrounding areas. Perspective is connected to Sputnik and also to Luton’s Churches together MIssionALL partnership (through Tony Thompson).
Huw Evans/ Poet and Author
In 2004 I completed an MA in Creative Writing at Northumbria University. Since then I have written scripts and verse drama for community groups, schools and puppet theatre, and have been writing children’s books. I am a member of Tuesday’s Childe, a theatre collective based in the North East of England. In 2015 my monologue ‘Another year of woe and disappointment’ was performed by Claire Skinner at the Tristan Bates theatre in Covent Garden.
Writing is my calling. As with any art, the impulse to write and its expression come from inside. So long as I am writing honestly my work inevitably expresses aspects of my faith or its outworking.
I am part of City Church, Newcastle.
Joanna Karselis/ Composer and Singer-Songwriter
My work mainly consists of composing music for film, TV and theatre, which I’ve been doing since 2013. I also work as a singer-songwriter. To date I’ve worked on films which have been screened around the world and have won jury prizes at film festivals, as well as plays which have had runs at the Edinburgh and Brighton Fringe Festivals. I’ve also had music played on BBC Introducing WM.
I am part of Oasis Church, Birmingham and am part of the Brum Sputnik Hub. I feel that composition is my spiritual act of worship. God has given me a gift, and on every project I work to glorify His name.
Pip Piper/ Film Maker
I have been making films since 1994. I co-founded One Small Barking Dog as a charity back in 2001 after several years of creating films under that name. OSBD, whist developing young filmmakers and engaging contemporary culture, made numerous short films, images for worship videos and some longer form documentaries that took us as far afield as Peru and Ukraine.
In 2006 Blue Hippo Media was formed as a more commercial film company to enable us to make bigger films for the bigger screen. Over the past 7 years BHM have made 6 feature length films for cinema, TV and on line distribution. I produced The Insatiable Moon feature film in 2009/10 with the producer of the Lord of the Rings. The film was released in cinemas in NZ and UK and won best foreign film at the Moondance film festival in the US and best actor and supporting actor at the NZ film awards.
Last Shop Standing, a feature doc which I directed was global film for Record Store Day in 2013 and gained 5 stars and top 10 films for 2012 in Q magazine. It airs on Sky Arts regularly.
My faith defines me and my filmmaking is a natural expression of who i am. That does not mean however that i make “Christian films” or am a “Christian filmmaker”. My faith does have an impact on what stories I choose to tell and how I work with colleagues and those around me. My passion is to be the very best version of myself as a filmmaker and I look to God to help me to be that.
I am part of Oasis Church, Birmingham and am connected to the Brum Sputnik Hub.
Ruth Chipperfield/ Jewellery Maker
I am a jewellery sculptor and founder of Ruth Mary Jewellery. I handcraft original couture lace motifs from cotton thread, create a mould around them and replicate the design in solid silver, or most recently in solid gold. This unique process forms the foundation of my signature collection.
My aim is to create a high-end global fashion brand, whilst putting people before profit and employing those who need a chance (ex-offenders, people with illnesses etc.). I represent the face of the brand and have done a variety of public speaking engagements (including radio), telling my story from severe illness to building a business. This story speaks of God’s grace at every corner and so people ask questions.
I am part of Jubilee Church, Coventry.
Daniel Blake/ Fashion Designer
I am a fashion designer based in London. I launched my first collection in Spring 2004 and having previously sold to specialist stores and boutiques in the UK and abroad, I successfully designed and delivered ten consecutive collections, which I exhibited to a growing client base at London and Paris Fashion Weeks. The collection is now retailed directly to my clients through a series of exclusive events and collaborations throughout the season, often supporting a number of charities.
My creative skills are a way of reaching a group of people dealing with all kinds of identity issues including rejection and self worth. I’m learning to be outspoken about my faith and act on what God is saying in the moment. My team and I always pray over the work and the models we work with and I also pray over my work that they’ll be garments of righteousness and a blessing to those who wear them.
I am one of the leaders at Hope Church, Bermondsey.
Faith Dwight/ Photographer
I am a photographer who grew up in the American South but now lives in Bedfordshire. I tell stories through pictures to show that your life is more beautiful than you think.
I am part of Kings Arms, Bedford and am connected to the Bedford Sputnik Hub.
Phil and Harri Mardlin/ Actors
We run LifeBox, a Bedfordshire-based theatre company that’s been in existence since 2012. We work in two main areas: artistic projects that focus on new writing for theatre, and supporting the creation of innovative and memorable training experiences. In collaboration with other practitioners, we champion established and emerging writers’ new material in the earliest days of its development through to full production, which has led to performances at Reading Fringe, Bedfringe and the Etcetera in London. Along with No Loss Productions, we’ve pioneered a week-long new writing festival called StageWrite that has just run for its fifth year. LifeBox actors also work with clients in corporate and health care settings to support the delivery of training courses through the use of live action scenarios and forum theatre.
We want to be known as people who deliver excellent work, honour our clients and associates and don’t compromise on integrity – which helps lead to conversations about what we believe, and what’s really important to us.
We are part of Kings Arms, Bedford and lead the Bedford Sputnik Hub.