• Ariane Koek


    Ariane Koek is Science Gallery Venice’s first Director. She has a love of and expertise in imagination and creativity in arts, science and technology.  She initiated and designed  as the Founding Director for nearly 5 years  Arts At CERN  – the international interdisciplinary arts/science/technology programme based at  the world’s largest particle physics public research laboratory in Switzerland. Prior to that she was given the Clore Fellowship -  an international cultural leadership award for her work  in culture, including as an award-winning staff producer in BBC radio and television known for working across disciplines. Ariane enjoys writing about interdisciplinarity and artists and their work – with essays for exhibitions including those by  Pipilotti Rist, Goshka Macuga and Bill Fontana.  She is on the  Advisory Boards of the House of Electronic Arts (HEK, Switzerland)  Arts At CERN, and the Joint Research Council’s sci-art programme based at ISPRA, Italy.

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  • Heather Thomas

    Head of Development and Fundraising - Deputy Director

    Heather Thomas brings 20 years of experience in the arts and youth services to Science Gallery Venice. In London, she had the privilege of working at Tate and the Royal Academy of Arts. She also served as Development and Communications Director for where she helped transform traditional youth services for the digital age. In 2014, Heather earned her MBA from Copenhagen Business School. Her deep passion for nature has since lead her to develop skills as a climate change advocate. She created a sustainable food enterprise called The Mindful Kitchen, trained with Al Gore to become a Climate Reality Leader and spent the past year fundraising for Sustain, the UK's alliance for better food and farming.

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  • Fabio Poles

    Head of Project Delivery

    Fabio Poles has been the Director of the Venetian Research and Innovation District (DVRI) since 2013 and is the Associated Founder of the Civil Economics School (Incisa, Florence). In 2015 he was elected Vice president of Inecoop, Istituto Nazionale per l'Educazione Cooperativa. He was previously Secretary General of Fondazione Studium Generale Marcianum per la promozione di studi e ricerche. He has also worked in management roles for several companies and for the last ten years he has been working actively in the field of Higher Education Management. He also contributes to several local and national newspapers. Recently he gained a PhD in Civil Economics at Istituto Universitario Sophia (Incisa, Florence).

  • Erica Villa

    Communications Manager

    Erica graduated with a degree in Biology at the University of Padua and completed her Master’s Degree in Science Communication at the SISSA, Trieste. She has worked as cultural mediator for the UNESCO project “La Navigation du Savoir” in Villefranche-sur-mer (France). After her Master’s Degree she worked for Il Pensiero Scientifico Editore, a scientific and medical publishing house. She also worked in the press and communication office of the Italian National Institutes of Health and of the Italian National Transplant Centre, part of the Ministry of Health. She is a member of SWIM, the Italian association of science writers and currently works as communications manager both at Science Gallery Venice and at the Management Department of Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. She is a soprano singer in the Big Vocal Orchestra, loves to dance tango and writes short science stories for young children.

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