The Fishslab Gallery is made up of a group of volunteers that have worked together as a team over the years to keep the art gallery running as a non-profit organisation here in Whitstable. You can find some info about our committee members below.
Barbara Drinkwater (Chair)
I have always enjoyed art, both as a student and in my career in education. In my retirement it has been a privilege to work with other artists to promote an affordable place for artists to exhibit their work. I have been involved in the Fishslab project almost from its beginning 15 years ago.
The Fishslab is a wonderful gallery to exhibit in and I have loved being involved in seeing it progress from a rather tired looking exhibiting area to the attractive space it is now. We have an amazing enthusiastic committee who make the gallery a worthwhile place to visit.
Cathy McTurk (Changeover & Maintenance)
As a founding member of the Fishslab Gallery I have had the pleasure of working with a terrific team, and of seeing the gallery take its place as a valuable contribution to Whitstable’s art scene. I am responsible for general maintenance of the gallery, with a trusted electrician, plumber and our brilliant handyman, Mark who decorates the gallery annually. Our star cleaner, Valerie is a gem too. I also have the responsibility of ‘changeover’ along with Kev, our artist in residence, to greet the new weekly exhibitors and to show them how the gallery operates.
Amanda Tennant (Bookings Secretary & Deputy Treasurer)
I’ve been a member of the committee since 2018 and have been a Whitstable resident since 2015. I’m the bookings secretary which means when (if!) you get through on 1 August it’s me you talk to. I’m also the Deputy Treasurer.
Cara MacNally (Social Media & Website Manager)
I joined the Fishslab committee as Social Media & Website Manager during the panedemic, I started the Instagram page for the gallery which is now thriving and continues to grow and I also contribute to the Facebook page and the website alongside Jaz!
I took a short break from my role to focus on my professional practice as a documentary photographer. I am so grateful to the Fishslab gallery as this is where I held my first solo exhibition ‘Dimentcato in Italy’ in 2021 which gave me the confidence and boost to continue as a creative.
Maxine Russo (Vice Chair)
Hi I’m Maxine and I am the Vice Chair. I have lived in Whitstable since 2021 and have previous committee experience when I helped on school and church committees before moving here. Before taking semi retirement I was an Office Manager in an independent school and prior to that worked as a Personal Assistant to senior directors in financial institutions in the City. I am currently doing a part time Art History and Visual Culture degree and enjoying living by the sea.
Jaz Bushell (Website & Social Media)
I moved to Whitstable 3 years ago to pursue a different life after running a successful painted backdrop and draping company for 30 years.
In January 2023 after having an exhibition at the Fishslab Gallery I joined their committee as a volunteer. Being on the committee has given me a chance to work with a terrific team, and be part of a gallery that has become a staple in the Whitstable’s art scene.
Lawrence Fletcher (Leaseholder)
I started painting when I semi retired. I joined a watercolour art class my wife was involved in and subsequently did life drawing, oil painting and sculpture classes. My style varies but is generally figurative if sometimes a little abstract.
I have exhibited in east kent galleries and most notably at the Kings Place gallery in London alongside other artists including Maggie Hambling and Ken Howard. My work is in private collections in the UK and Europe.
Kim Salisbury (Treasurer)
My name is Kim Salisbury and I am the Treasurer for the Fishslab gallery. I have lived most of my life in Kent but lived the first 12 years in Germany, Kenya and other parts of the UK as my father was serving in the British Army. In my working life I was the manager of a Mediation service and a Restorative Justice practitioner. I moved to Whitstable with my husband a few years ago and have enjoyed being party of this vibrant community, especially being involved with the Fishslab as it has
awakened my interest in art, ceramics, textiles etc. A few years ago, I ticked off one from my bucketlist and visited Monet’s Garden in Giverny. It didn’t disappoint.
Karen Wynyard (Secretary)
After 2 years at what was Harrow School of Art I left to work in London. From London I went to Nottinghamshire to train as a teacher; specialising in English, Education and Art.
After 25 years teaching I retired and lived in Canterbury where I started painting again.
Seven years ago I moved to Whitstable to live among the community of artists and build a studio to continue painting. In May 2022 after having exhibitions at the FishSlab gallery I joined their committee as a volunteer. Being on the committee has been both challenging and enjoyable.