Project Curator & Manager, Jenna C. Ashton

Lead Artist, Thread Bearing Witness, Alice Kettle

Project Assistant, Thread & Bureau, Tamsin Koumis

Photographer, Amy Smithers

Professional photography for “Still I Rise” by Shirlaine Forrest

Filmmaker, Angelica Cabezas Pino

Composer & Sound Artist , Kevin Malone

Project Assistant & Fabrication, Jenny Eden

Project Assistant & Fabrication, Patrizia Costantin

Design & Fabrication, Jennifer Wilks & Alison Stewart

Translation, Abir Tobji

Translation, Paula Teimouri



The Travelling Heritage Bureau is a co-research project and supportive network with and for international women artists based in the North West of England. The Bureau is a space of resistance, creativity and inclusion; a space for women artists including refugees, exiles, those seeking asylum and other migrant women with direct experiences of journeying or displacement.

Digital Women’s Archive North (DWAN) leads the project – a Manchester based feminist arts and heritage organisation supporting women's practice and addressing social inequalities.

The Bureau aims to ensure the arts practice and cultural heritage of international women visual artists is identified, documented and shared.

Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the project emerges in response to the demand for the archives and heritage sectors to be more fully engaged with the contemporary challenges that face collecting, curatorial practices and methods of documentation around cultural heritage and arts practice. Arts archives in the UK are dedicated to collecting and documenting British practitioners. However, many women artists, especially those who are migrants or from underrepresented backgrounds, fall through the gaps. We work to ensure that works, practices, methods and knowledge of those migrant practitioners are included within a broader narrative of British heritage (in-line with the UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of the Artist, 1980, and 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.)

The Bureau has many strands to it in terms of activities and outputs for identifying, documenting and sharing, developed in collaboration with the 23 (and growing) women artists, and with Community Arts North West, HOME, Manchester Art Gallery, Zellij Arts, Global Arts Manchester, Sky Women’s Studio, Whitworth Art Gallery and with Alice Kettle and the Thread Bearing Witness project. 

Exhibitions, writings, conversations, residencies, archives, sonic works, a film and photography – all come together across the project to demonstrate how arts practice and methods function as documentation and living memory. This will all be captured in a new digital archive and other shareable resources.

Follow DWAN on twitter @dwarchivenorth