Anne Louise Avery is an award-winning art historian and curator, with over fifteen years experience in both public and commercial realms of the art world.
Since graduating with First Class Honours from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, she has studied at the University of Oxford, ICU University, Tokyo, and Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, where she recently held a prestigious fellowship in American art history. She has won numerous awards, including the fiercely competitive Daiwa Foundation Scholarship (previous scholars include British ceramicist Edmund de Waal) in 1995, which enabled her to study Japanese in Tokyo to an advanced level.
After researching, curating and project managing a number of successful and critically acclaimed exhibitions for other organisations, museums and galleries, including a major Heritage Lottery funded exhibitory and research project relating to Oxford's links to the Transatlantic Slave Trade, she decided to found her own company, Flash of Splendour Arts, in order to concentrate on her own particular areas of interest within an ethical and community-focused platform.
As an art historian, she is working on a groundbreaking catalogue raisonne of the African American artist, Edward Mitchell Bannister (ca.1828-1901) (from February 2013, see the New York-based IFAR database for more details) and is the lead scholar-consultant for Edward M. Bannister: An American Artist, a major American documentary feature film about his life and works. See http://www.edwardmbannister.com/ for further details.
She is also much in demand as a consultant by museums and auction houses, both in Europe and America, recently authenticating and researching newly discovered Bannister drawings and paintings for High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia, Skinner, the major Boston auctioneers and Swann Galleries and Keno Auctions, both in New York City.
Steve Pratley, Head of Education
Steve Pratley is an internationally recognised expert in music, creativity and communication within Special Needs education, with over twenty years experience in schools and colleges throughout the United Kingdom and Europe.
He is a founding member and core instructor of the leading music charity, Soundabout, which specializes in training teachers to use music to unlock the potential of Special Needs students. He is also a trustee of the Exuberant Trust, which supports young people in Oxfordshire who are developing their interest in the arts.
His skill in enabling teachers and educators to encourage creativity and expression in children and young adults, has led to long-term relationship with many educational institutions across the UK. For the past seven years, for example, he has mentored Oxford Brookes University music undergraduates, guiding them through their final year placements and lecturing on various aspects of Flash of Splendour methodology.
As well as co-ordinating our educational programmes, Steve also develops and leads our workshops and activity days in storytelling, music, songwriting and art.