Highlights Arts is fascinated by the chemistry of encounters, in the scope of the imagination, in unlikely and extraordinary outcomes in untested territories.

We connect a network of emerging and established artists and cultural practitioners from Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Lebanon, the Arctic, Iraq,  the UK and more to follow. We have been working together since 2007. Here are some of the artists we have worked with.

We create and share alternative stories forged at the intersection of arts, rights and social justice. Stories which challenge preconceptions and stereotypes, explore personal and political narratives, open spaces for local and global conversations and engage new audiences.

Our collective work includes producing and curating festivals, collaborations and new commissions in a wide range of art forms, including film, literature, visual arts, theatre, Live Art, spoken word and music.

To see some of our previous works, from poetry translations between Iraqi and UK poets, to commissioned short films, and music gigs, please visit here.


Sara Sharaawi


Highlight Arts is  is led by Executive Director Sara Sharaawi and a board of trustees.
Projects are curated and coordinated by a group of artists producers who develop, manage and support projects throughout the year.
Executive Director – Sara Sharaawi – sara@highlightarts.org

Executive Director (interim) – Yasmin Fedda – yasmin.fedda@highlightarts.org

Project Coordinator – Mirja Koponen – mirja@highlightarts.org

Project Coordinator – Yasmin Al-Hadithi – yasmin.hadithi@highlightarts.org

Project Coordinator – Ryan Van Winkle – ryan@highlightarts.org

Project Coordinator – Daniel Gorman – dan@highlightarts.org



Jonathan Atkinson | Mary Ann DeVlieg | Julia Farrington | Sara Maia Jean Isaac | Jon Davis | Áine O’Brien


Highlight Arts is a Scottish registered charity SCIO SC 044516

Here are out Charity Accounts and Trustee reports:

Charity Accounts and Trustee Report 2018

Charity Accounts and Trustee Report 2017

Charity Accounts and Trustee Report 2016

Charity Accounts and Trustee Report 2015

Charity Accounts and Trustee Report 2014


We are very grateful for the Cultural Economy Sustainable Development Grant from Creative Scotland

Highlight Arts is a member of Film Hub Scotland (part of the BFI Film Audience Network).

Some of our partners & sponsors are listed below:

Arab British Centre
Arts Council England
Ashmolean Museum
British Council
British Institute for Study of Iraq
Creative Scotland
Edinburgh International Book Festival
Edinburgh International Science Festival
English PEN
Festival of Ideas
Finnish Institute
FUSE Gallery
Hippodrome Silent Film Festival
Into Film
Literary Dundee
Liverpool Arab Arts Festival
Midnight Sun Film Festival
Perpetuum Mobile
Rich Mix
Sandblast Arts
Scottish Documentary Institute
Scottish Poetry Library
Scottish Storytelling Centre
Sami Contemporary Arts Centre
The Forest