The resilience of The Fairfax Gallery
In a world increasingly dominated by digital screens and virtual experiences, the allure of visiting an art gallery and engaging with artwork in person remains unparalleled. Stepping into the hallowed halls of an art gallery offers a sensory feast that no phone screen can replicate. The vibrant colors, intricate details, and sheer scale of the artwork come alive, immersing you in a tangible and transformative encounter. From the interplay of light and texture to the atmosphere of shared appreciation, an art gallery unveils a multisensory journey that transcends the limitations of a phone, making it a far richer and more meaningful experience.
There is no need to travel to London to see the Summer Exhibition! The Fairfax Gallery will be holding its 28th Summer Show from the 10th June. Not quite the 250 years plus of the Royal Academy, Summer Exhibition, but making it a must-see destination for art lovers locally.
Andrew Fairfax Scrutton left the world of Reinsurance at Lloyds of London to set up a contemporary art gallery with London standards of art but in the relaxed environment of its listed building. For its first summer show in 1995, it was a very different time on The Pantiles when the historical area was a sea of antiques, shops and events celebrating its history. He raised a few eyebrows with the impertinence of selling ‘New’ artworks. Fast forward 28 years, and the Pantiles is a sea of parasols from the eating and drinking establishments, with the Fairfax Being one of its longest-standing businesses.
There were a few rookie errors in the opening year, such as timing an exhibition opening to coincide with the Wimbledon finals on what turned out to be the hottest day of the year! On the upside, he had a lot of Pimms to drink. Other events over the years were harder to predict, such as the most significant financial crash in a century, Brexit and most recently, a global pandemic.’
There have been many changes in the art world, the largest being the rise of the internet. People are so accustomed to viewing the world through the prism of their phone that it is easy to forget the experience of standing in front of an original artwork and seeing in the media chosen by the artist, experiencing how the light reacts with the surface of the work and the colours impossible to recreate on a digital screen. The gallery has a website and social media presence to temp visitors. Still, it is far more rewarding for clients to visit an exhibition to see the love and skill an artist has put into their work vs swiping through images on their phone.
The Summer Show runs from 12th June to 5th.
September, with new pieces arriving to replace those sold, so art lovers may wish to visit more than once.
The show will feature both longstanding artists the gallery has represented since its opening, along with some newer upcoming artists. These artists comprise winners and finalists of prestigious national awards, including Mary Jane Ansell and Shaun Ferguson, a former Discerning Eye New Discovery Prize winner, and Barry Wilson winning a Saatchi Award.
Artworks are displayed over both floors, offering clients a relaxed viewing setting, with its curator Andrew Fairfax Scrutton on hand to assist. The gallery also provides a popular service to clients whereby artworks are taken to their homes to be considered in situ, ensuring the art fits the space perfectly.