ArtsEquator Ltd is an arts organization that values and promotes Southeast Asian regional art practice. Through the ArtsEquator Fellowship and other programmes, ArtsEquator is committed to developing arts writing and criticism which identify Southeast Asian creative practices as part of, rather than adjunct to, global contemporary arts. Our aim is to cultivate and grow arts criticism in Southeast Asia amongst our principal stakeholders – arts critics, arts makers and arts audiences.
ArtsEquator was founded by Kathy Rowland and Jenny Daneels in November 2016. Artsequator.com started as a Southeast Asian arts and culture platform, dedicated to supporting and promoting arts criticism with a regional perspective in Southeast Asia. Producing weekly articles supported by industry and community programmes, ArtsEquator’s efforts contributed to the development of critical thinking in the arts. With the ArtsEquator Fellowship launched in 2023, ArtsEquator has evolved into focusing on programme and grant-giving platforms to continue our mission to cultivate and grow arts criticism in Southeast Asia. Artsequator.com now serves as an active archive for researchers, writers and students.
Learn more about our journey since 2016, and our new direction from 2023 here.
ArtsEquator Ltd. is a Charity, registered in Singapore (UEN No: 201701329M).
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Co-founder and Managing Editor
A chance encounter with a commedia dell arte troupe led Kathy Rowland to a career in the arts, where she has spent over 25 years, running arts and culture programs and arts media platforms. Her main areas of interest are arts media and freedom of expression in the arts. Her articles on the politics of culture have appeared in publications in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, the US and South Korea. Kathy edited and introduced Staging History: Selected Plays from Five Arts Centre 1984 – 2014 (2015), Huzir Sulaiman: Collected Plays 1998 – 2012 (2013) and Krishen Jit: An Uncommon Position, Selected Writings (2003). Kathy has produced theatre and visual arts events in Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, New York, Australia and Thailand.
In 2001, Kathy started the Malaysia arts website kakiseni.com with Jenny Daneels and this led to the Boh Cameronian Arts Awards in 2002. Jenny and Kathy went on to set up ArtsEquator.com in 2016 in Singapore. Kathy is the Founder and Lead Researcher in a theatre archive project, MyArtsMemoryProject run by Five Arts Centre Malaysia. She was a member of the International Programme Advisory Committee of the 8th World Summit on Arts and Culture, held in Kuala Lumpur in 2019. Born and raised in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, she now calls Singapore home.
Project Director (ArtsEquator Fellowship)
Wahyuni Hadi has spent a large part of the last 25 years promoting Southeast Asian cinema and contributing to the culture and arts scene as an arts manager, curator and producer. She started project managing for an animation company before joining The Substation in 1999 as Programme Manager and Editor (of Substance). She continued to champion local works as Commissioning Editor at MediaCorp Arts Central in 2003 and later went on to take on leadership roles as Co-Director of Objectifs Centre for Photography & Filmmaking in 2005 and Executive Director of the Singapore International Film Festival (2013-2019). She curated and commissioned dance films for the Singapore Arts Festival in 2011 and 2012, and co-produced the Cannes’ Camera d’Or winning film Ilo Ilo in 2013. Yuni published the book Behind the Camera (Objectifs Films) in 2013 and contributed to the book World Film Locations: Singapore (The University of Chicago Press) in 2014. In 2022, she wrote Bangkok Café (Five Finger Mountain).
Yuni is an Eisenhower Fellow and received the United Technologies Corporation Fellowship in 2016. In 2015, The Substation acknowledged her contribution to Singapore cinema with an Honourary Award at the Singapore Short Film Awards. In 2022, she received the Professional Achievement Award from Thailand’s Ramkhamhaeng University’s ASEAN Film Festival for outstanding contribution to ASEAN cinema. Yuni is currently Chairperson of The Substation and serves on the board of Objectifs Centre for Photography and Filmmaking.
Board of Directors
Jenny Daneels, Co-Founder & Chairperson
With her background in finance and journalism, Jenny Daneels has worked for Asiamoney, the Asian arm of Euromoney, covering Asia, and as a financial analyst for WI Carr covering Bangladesh and the Indian subcontinent. She moved to Malaysia in 1996 and was a freelance business writer for publications such as Asian Business and CFO Asia. In 2001, Jenny started the Malaysia arts website kakiseni.com with Kathy Rowland, which led to the birth of the Boh Cameronian Arts Awards. In 2006, she moved to the Welsh order and co-founded the mental health charity The Cart Shed in 2011 where she is currently a director and a sponsor. Jenny also ran the fundraising exhibition Out Of Nature sculpture show in 2013, 2015 and 2017. In 2016, Jenny and Kathy Rowland founded ArtsEquator.com, with Jenny’s seed investment and Kathy overseeing operations. With their strategic planning, ArtsEquator.com became a charity in 2020 with a dedicated board of directors. Jenny is currently involved with the Black Mountains College, an alternative college starting operations in September 2021.
Daniel has over 20 years of experience in financial services. Over 15 years of which were spent making and managing private equity investments across multiple industries in Southeast Asia. Most of Daniel’s professional career was spent at CIMB Investment Bank, Malaysia, where he was for a total of 16 years. He was responsible for the establishment of CIMB’ private equity arm in early 2000 and the formation of two private equity funds. As a senior member of CIMB Private Equity, Daniel sat on the board of directors of five portfolio companies.
Anupama Sekhar is currently Director of Policy and Engagement at the International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies (IFACCA), shaping IFACCA’s policy development and services globally. She was previously the Director of the Culture Department at the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), overseeing ASEF’s strategy in arts, culture & heritage. Since 2015, Anupama has been a member of the UNESCO Expert Facility on the Governance of Culture for the implementation of the 2005 Convention. She holds degrees in English Literature and International Studies. She is a trained dancer in the Indian classical style of Bharatnatyam. Originally from India, Anupama is currently based in Dubai.
Koh Chye Hock
Koh Chye Hock currently serves as a Chief Legal Counsel (China) to Chevron. Prior to this, he was Legal Director at Unocal. Koh Chye is the Chairman of the Board for Philharmonic Winds (PhilWinds), a non-profit wind instrument orchestra in Singapore. He is also on the board of trustees of the Business Times Budding Artists Fund and a member of the Sengkang Hospital ethics committee.
Naeem Kapadia is a banking professional and dual-qualified lawyer with over a decade of experience in structuring, negotiating and documenting loan products. Naeem started his career as a banking and finance lawyer, working at international law firms in London, Paris and Singapore. He is currently part of the Loan Structuring & Execution team at Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited. Naeem is also an established arts reviewer and commentator who has been writing critically about theatre in Singapore since 2011. He runs a dedicated theatre blog, Crystalwords, and has contributed theatre reviews to publications such as arts journal The Flying Inkpot and Singapore newspaper TODAY.
Marion F. D’Cruz
One of the pioneers of contemporary dance in Malaysia, Marion F. D’Cruz studied traditional, modern, and contemporary dance in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, London, and New York. She formed Marion D’Cruz and Dancers in 1983 and performed extensively locally and internationally. A founding member of Five Arts Centre, Marion has received numerous awards including the 2019 Hai-O Arts & Culture Grants Lifetime Achievement Award. Marion holds a BA in Performing Arts and an MA in Dance from Universiti Sains Malaysia and teaches fulltime in the Dance Faculty of the National Academy of Arts, Culture and Heritage (ASWARA – Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan). She continues to produce, perform, and choreograph.
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