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Notes on organising an art exhibition in a new city

Here I am, picture hanger by day.
Here I am, picture hanger by day.

Hello, I’m Emily, the newest addition to Patrick’s team. I’m a picture hanger by day, artist filmmaker by night. After graduating from Chelsea College of Arts in 2016 I’ve moved to Brighton. Hoping that the sea air will inspire new art. It’s working pretty well so far.  I’ve met one brilliant artist, Rebecca Archer, who recently completed a residency at Blast Theory. Together we are preparing an exhibition for February 2017 at Gallery Lock In.

The Robin Hood, a non-profit pub in Hove that supports the local community
The Robin Hood. A non-profit pub in Hove that supports the local community.

A few weeks ago we met up  with the owner of Gallery Lock In.  Beth showed us around the space – two garages that have been converted into a gallery.  Beth has a very enthusiastic approach to curating.  She encourages us to utilise the space however we see fit, even if that means painting the walls.  It is refreshing to meet a gallery owner who is so passionate about facilitating the creation of non-commercial art.

Gallery Lock-In is an old garage converted into an art gallery
Gallery Lock-In may look like an old garage (well, because it is) but it’s also so much more!

Over pints in the The Robin Hood Pub ( a stones throw away from the gallery), Beth described more about the space and how she organises shows.  The rent is kept affordable so that artists can make and show work without the pressure of having to sell.  However, she doesn’t discourage selling, if you do, you keep 100%. Which is unheard of.  Usually gallerists keep a cut of the price.

On a typical private view night they have a few drinks in the gallery then migrate to the pub. Those that attend Gallery Lock In private views enjoy discussing art and often, a debate around the work ensues.  A large part of being at art school was lengthily discussing the art, it is something I never thought I’d say I’d miss, but I do!  So I’m looking forward to that.  The pub itself has an interesting backstory.  The Robin Hood is a non-profit pub.  After paying its employees and rent, all profit goes back into the community  – making the decision to order another pint an easy one!

We’ve booked the space for the 16th – 18th of February, and since our visit to Gallery Lock – In, we’ve been busily planning for the show. Exciting things are happening. Watch this space.

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