People involved at the core of the gallery who make things happen are here. Introducing you to the director, the designer, writers, artists, freelance helpers, supporters, advisers and friends

People involved: the opening for herman de vries and shaped by stone
Gathering upstairs for the opening of herman de vries in 2017

While the primary purpose of GroundWork Gallery is to show great art relating to the environment, the gallery equally exists as a place to get people involved together.

Here you will find details of some of the people who are closely and regularly involved, and who commented on the project right from the beginning.

Promotional film about GroundWork Gallery made by James Murray-White, 2017.

The Director

People involved: the director Veronica Sekules

Veronica Sekules

‘My experience is in the art world, environment, heritage and conservation. I decided that I had to run the building as an art gallery, with a specialised programme concentrating on art and environment. I wanted people involved with it. My idea was to create a social, political and educational asset as well as a new place for showing art.’

Veronica Sekules has more than 30 years’ experience working in art galleries. She has curated exhibitions, worked on projects with artists, engaged with schools and the general public both in the UK and internationally. Her long-term interest in the environment which informs GroundWork Gallery stems from a formative period working for Friends of the Earth. As a result of this, she wrote the Friends of the Earth Cookbook, published by Penguin Books in 1980.

Veronica’s main career followed at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia, where she was first a curator, then Head of Education and Research and Deputy Director. From there she ran many international and local projects.(see Cultures of the Countryside, below)

Writer, curator, educator, project manager

Veronica Sekules writes both as an educationalist and as an art historian, specialising in both current and earlier periods. She wrote a general book Medieval Art, originally published by Oxford University Press in 2001 . In addition she had periods of time working as an independent consultant. From 2005-6 she was on secondment to Tate Britain, to manage the early stages of the Visual Dialogues project for young people, with Tate partner museums in Sheffield, Newcastle, Birmingham and Manchester. See Katy McCall’s article about some of that work here: Veronica is currently a judge for the International Children in Museums Award, run jointly by the European Museums Academy and Hands On International

The Graphic Designer

Peopl involved: Pearce Marchbank RDI Graphic Designer

Pearce Marchbank RDI

From the outset I was interested to contribute a clear graphic identity to the project. I knew that this would make the crucial difference to its presentation as an organisation. It had to be convincing and professional, coherent, consistent and elegant.’

Pearce Marchbank

Pearce Marchbank is one of the most respected names in British graphic design.  He has worked as art director for numerous magazines, most famously for Time Out magazine, for whom he created its classic logo. This is still in use worldwide after nearly 50 years. As designer for Music Sales, the world’s largest music publishers, he designed books for musicians including the Beatles, Paul Simon, David Bowie and Philip Glass. Richard Branson asked him to set up Virgin Books, and then to become design director of Virgin Records. In 1988 he redesigned both The Independent and The Times colour sections. From 2005, he designed most of the packaging for the John Lewis stores.  

 In 2012 Marchbank designed the official Royal Mail stamps for the opening of London Olympics.

Three filmed interviews by James Murrray-White

James Murray-White has been involved with the gallery since it opened as our film-maker in residence. You will find his films across this site. He filmed these interviews with three artists who know the project well.

A response to the gallery by Loukas Morley

Comments on the gallery by Lee Grandjean

Being involved with the gallery, by Tim Simmons

Postscript: Cultures of the Countryside

This was a Heritage Lottery funded project which Veronica Sekules ran together with colleagues Bee Farrell and David Hulks: ‘Culture of the Countryside’ from 2008-2011 The book was published by Taylor and Francis in 2019.

Further information at:

Cultures of the Countryside by Veronica Sekules published by Routledge
Cultures of the Countryside published in paperback December 2019

This book was recommended in 2018 for the shortlist for the East Anglian Book Awards, and the judge, Helen Dawson commented:

The core of this “text”book is about East Anglian projects. An invaluable book for students, teachers, researchers and practitioners interested in rural identity and the context of the countryside. It covers the future of the rural environment; the role of museums, heritage projects. Also it considers engaging communities and young people in keeping old crafts and traditions alive and protecting the environment

Helen Dawson, Non Fiction Judge, 2018 East Anglian Book Awards