We’re a small but dedicated team of artists and art enthusiasts at Cardiff and Vale UHB, all of whom know the benefits of art to patient experience and are passionate about continuing to develop the health board’s art offering. Read more about us below:
Alex Staples joined the team as Arts Programme Project Manager and primarily focuses on our hospital sites and inpatients.
Alex has a background in Musical theatre and worked in the West End as well as growing up with an artist in her close family. She has a great passion for art and the positive impact it has on both mental and physical wellbeing.
She has also been an inpatient in hospital for long periods of time and appreciates the need for a positive environment to aid recovery within in the hospital setting. This is something she works towards on all our hospital sites, continuing to develop and grow the programme within our hospitals and their surroundings and to make a positive difference to the lives of our patients and their families.
Simone Joslyn is Head of the Health Charity and Arts teams. Her background within mental health nursing has allowed her to see first-hand the positive impact that art can have on people’s health and wellbeing.
She was also instrumental in the development of the Hearth Gallery, a unique space for contemporary art, the first of its kind in Wales. She manages the development and continued growth of the health board’s arts programme in order to improve our patients’ and staff’s lives with art.
Melanie joined the Arts Team as Exhibitions Co-ordinator for the Hearth Gallery in 2015 after working with Cardiff and Vale UHB as a commissioned independent artist. In 2019 she took up the role of Arts in Health Project Manager to facilitate arts projects both within hospital sites and within the community, and also co-curates our Exhibitions Programme. Melanie’s focus through several new projects aims to build connections and collaborations with community groups, third sector organisations, arts organisations, and a network of artists and creative practitioners.
Melanie has a Fine Arts background, has worked as a Complementary Therapist for many years in London and Cardiff and has experience working in marketing. She strongly believes in the power of holistic, creative activities to improve our health and wellbeing.
She is a member of the Kings Road Artists’ Studios collective in Cardiff and regularly exhibits her artwork locally. She has been a Wales Chwarae Teg Womenspire Awards finalist and participated in a British Council UK/Italy delegation to Rome for the Hearth Gallery.
Magda Lackowska is the Gallery Co-Ordinator of the Hearth Gallery and other associated exhibition spaces in Llandough Hospital and Barry Hospital.
With a Fine Art background, she is an active member of the Cardiff art community as she regularly partakes in artist-led and community-driven collaborative projects alongside Klatch Collective.
Magda understands the positive impact art has on individuals’ health and wellbeing, both as a visual stimulant and a creative outlet. She strives for the art exhibited across the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board to always positively affect patients, staff and visitors, as well as being inclusive of all individuals and skillsets.
Justine is the Senior Communications Officer for Cardiff & Vale Health Charity and has a background in running the communication channels for health board charities after developing a passion for the world of public services and fundraising during her childhood.
She has a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing and actively writes and publishes novels in the fantasy genre. For Justine, writing creates an escape which nurtures her mental health and wellbeing, and provides entertainment for her readers.
Justine is a member of the CIPR (Chartered Institute of Public Relations) and is currently working on her chartership. By increasing her skillset, she can ensure the great work of the Arts Team, which enhances Patient Experience, reaches the audience it deserves.
Karolina joined the Arts for Health and Wellbeing Programe as part of her Creative Internship with Arts & Business Cymru. Karolina secured the internship after graduating in BA Photography at the University of South Wales. She finds her compassion towards the surrounding world helps her create striking images that explore challenging issues and ideas of consumption through their beauty. As an artist, Karolina understands the power of art and its positive impact on mental health and wellbeing.
During the ten month internship, Karolina wishes to use a combination of her passion for art and soft skills to support the team. She is already implementing her knowledge from her previous experience in hospitality, working on festivals and photography, to get to grips with fundraising.