Julia Stephen

Julia grew up in London where she was lucky enough to have parents who took her to galleries, the theatre and classical music concerts giving her a lifelong passion for all areas of the arts, although sadly no ability to create art herself!
Julia moved to Colchester in 1980 and has lived in the town ever since although twenty-two years of that were spent commuting to the head office of Marks & Spencer in Baker Street. Julia’s last job there was running the Arts & Science Forum, the brainchild of one of the Directors to give the staff the chance to experience all kinds of things they might never have otherwise encountered. Julia organised events such as the Royal Ballet dancing in the canteen, a talk on Quantum Physics, Cornelia Parker guiding staff round her exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery, a talk by Christo and Jeanne-Claude about wrapping the Reichstag, a Poet in Residence, Albert Roux giving a cookery demonstration and playwriting and bookbinding classes in the lunch hour.
Julia now works part time conducting social research interviews which gives her time to indulge her interest in the arts through trusteeships of organisations such as Colchester Arts Centre, the Mercury Theatre and Roman River Music, as well as the Foundation.
Julia and her husband love to travel, often to places inspired by lectures they hear as members of The Art Society Colchester (formally NADFAS), and collect art from places they visit. So Gujarati tribal textiles sit side by side with contemporary Iranian etchings, Moroccan woodwork, Turkish ceramics and of course East Anglian paintings, in a very overcrowded but colourful home.