Thank you to our supporting organisations

Lighthouse Arts Project Team

Ena Illume - member of the Lighthouse Arts Project Team

Ena Illume

Singer, Dancer

Ena, a young woman descending from NE Arnhem land, NT (Yolngu People) and Anatolia, Turkey has grown up in an artistic atmosphere and environment surrounded by nature and cultural exchanges, which has given her the foundations to thrive as an emerging artist. Ena studied at HSPA and NAISDA dance college. An impactful part of her life has been performing alongside her mother with the Gambirra Mob and The ILLUME Girls. Ena has been blessed to perform throughout Australia on festival stages including Splendour in the Grass and for theatre and television. 'Connection to Country is Connection to Self ' were words passed down from her mother. Ena is passionate about the youth and the future generations, "I want to be a part of positive change - locally, in the wider community & globally," Ena's role is young artists' advisor to Lighthouse Arts

Yvonne Illume - member of Lighthouse Arts Project Team

Yvonne Edwards

Visual Artist, Singer, Arts Administrator

Yvonne is a proud Yolngu woman; her people are from Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory. Connection to Country is a way of life that she expresses through music and visual arts. She is a singer in her family band, The ILLUME Girls. Their music is emotive and soulful, singing in Yolngu matha and English. Yvonne works as an Arts Administrator trainee for the City of Newcastle, working in the City’s cultural institutions. Her experience in, and passion for, the arts has led her in many directions, and one which she is very excited to be a part of is the Lighthouse Arts Project Team. Yvonne’s role is Indigenous Curator to Lighthouse Arts.

Lauren Hislop, access and inclusion consultant

Lauren Hislop

Writer, researcher

Lauren is a writer and an academic researcher who is passionate about social justice. As a woman with a disability, Lauren believes people with disability must be included in every area of society. Lauren has been involved in various social research projects. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Bachelor of Social Science Honours. Lauren is consultant to Lighthouse Arts on matters of access and inclusion.

Justine Cogan Lighthouse Arts project team member

Justine Cogan

Photographer, Cultural Strategist, Creative Mentor

Justine studied photography at UNSW College of Fine Arts before working in arts advocacy and business development at Tate London, Art Gallery of NSW and Hunter region arts organisations including Tantrum Theatre, Hunter Writers Centre and Octapod. Justine’s cultural community leadership has positioned her on the founding board of the Independent Creative Alliance Newcastle (2018-20), Committee for the Hunter and the Lord Mayor of Newcastle’s COVID Taskforce Leadership Team (2020). Drawing on her cultural industry expertise and passion for inclusive creative practice, Justine advises individuals, community networks, and cultural organisations on creative business strategies, programming, and creative practice. She is strategic advisor to Lighthouse Arts

Emma Welsh, fine arts students

Emma Welsh

Art Student

Emma is a young student who has a passion for art in both traditional and digital forms, studying at Merewether High School. Emma is currently completing a major work for HSC art and taking the first steps into the working artist world. Emma designed the Lighthouse Arts logo and her works are for sale at the Gallery Trading Store.

Clare Weeks gallery consultant curator

Clare Weeks

Gallery consultant

Clare is a photomedia artist who brings photography and theatre together to create stunning artworks that tell a story. Clare's artworks present narrative explorations of multiple sclerosis and the medicalised self, reframed by the lens, screen and page. Clare has developed innovative programs as education coordinator at the Maitland Regional Art Gallery, as photomedia teacher at the University of Newcastle and Newcastle Art School. In 2021, Clare was awarded the inaugural Maitland Regional Art Gallery (MRAG) Artists Bursary.

Judy Johnson poet

Judy Johnson

Poet, Novelist, Teacher

Judy has been part of the Australian Poetry and writing scene for over twenty years. She has published five poetry collections, a novel and a verse novel. She won the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award and her books have been placed on both the Sydney and Melbourne University Syllabus. Judy has been a judge for some of the most prestigious writing prizes in the country. Her role on the Lighthouse Arts Team is creative management and caretaking the authors of Lighthouse Arts.

Jasper Stevenson - artist


Digital Artist, Writer

Jasper is a digital artist and writer with a background in design and publishing. His recent artworks express a spiritual beauty through intricate mandalas that expand beyond traditional forms.  As part of his publishing career, he produced a national music magazine through which he developed an interest in soundscapes and sound design. He is also an early pioneer in Trans education and awareness, creating Australia’s first Transman support network more than 25 years ago. Jasper’s role on the Lighthouse Arts Project Team is to facilitate diversity within artist representation, including Disability and LGBTQI inclusion, as well as promoting the Digital Arts.

Ted Bassingthwaighte - member of the project team

Ted Bassingthwaighte

Digital Media Consultant,

Ted retired from the NSW police force in 2009.  He writes book reviews for a monthly magazine focussing on memoir, true crime and biography. He is an alumni of the Allen and Unwin ‘Life Stories’ course and  has been a member of Hunter Writers Centre since 2011. Ted has been published and awarded for his writing and is is in the final stage of a true crime book based on his experiences as a NSW Police detective.   Ted consults to Surfest, Newcastle as a Digital Media Consultant and manages a number of Surfest events.  Ted is media manager of Lighthouse Arts.

pic of Karen Crofts, Director, Hunter Writers Centre

Kazz Crofts

Writer and Director of
Hunter Writers Centre

Kazz graduated with a Masters degree in Creative Writing from the University of Newcastle in 2009 and has been director of Hunter Writers Centre for a decade. Lighthouse Arts is her brainchild but not without the wonderful project team and the support of the City of Newcastle, Port Authority of NSW, HWC board and local businesses. Kazz believes the Arts bonds the community and leads us out of dark times.