(Reproduced from Velvet Magazine, July 2018)
Having collected art for many years, Susie Turner will unveil her new venture, Gallery East, in Woodbridge later this year. Making her Cambridge Art Fair debut, she'll be showcasing work by eight landscape artists, each with their own distinctive style.
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"At Gallery East we will be showing contemporary work for those wanting to add inspiring art to their walls. While most of our artists have an East Anglian connection, we will be adding artists with different styles and showing women artists in particular. If there is a theme to the art we have chosen it is restlessness- in ourselves and our connection with our environment and what we seek to change around us.
How did you come to be in the art business? What made you want to open your own gallery?
"There's something about reaching a certain age and wanting to do something different. Having been collectors for many years we have decided to open our own gallery. In choosing art for the gallery it has inspired us to broaden our preconceptions about the art we like, for the good.
"In a busy and increasingly digital world we hear about more and more people choosing to have original art on their walls because they want to say something about who they are and what they believe in. We have seen magnificent collections in the smallest of flats.
Cambridge Art Fair is a highlight of the city's cultural year. What makes it a must for you?
"We visited the Cambridge Art Fair last year and were impressed with the quality and range of work available to buy at sensible prices. The fair is small enough for you to take everything in but nevertheless hone in on something which really grabs you. Cambridge is also a fantastic city with old and new bouncing up against each other.
What will you be bringing to this year's fair? Any big names for us to watch out for?
"We will be bringing eight artists, all expressing their views on the landscapes around them. Perienne Christian has a distinctive drawing style which looks at the connections between landscape, folklore and the role of the feminine inspired by local landscapes in Suffolk.
"Francis Bowyer has taken his art into a new place with abstract, three-dimensional paper collages, inspired by the Suffolk coast. Lydia Bauman uses mixed media to follow and paint landscapes from Yorkshire to Mexico. Our other equally notable artists include Barrie Houghton, Jane Human, Caroline Poole, Nahem Shoa and Michael Sofroniou.
We're guessing you have your own collection. What is it about a piece that attracts you- and makes you want to buy?
"One of my favourite additions to our own collection is a painting by an Austrian painter, Albert Reuss, who fled the Nazis and ended up painting in Mousehole, Cornwall. The Painting is called 'Still life with red stone and tiles'. I like the story around the painting and the abstract representation of form and landscape.
What would you say to encourage visitors to come along to Cambridge Art Fair, whether they're regular visitors or first-timers?
"We expect to see a good crowd again and I'm sure it will include new collectors wanting to buy for the first time; our art ranges in price from £350 to £8,500. The fair is a relaxing place to spend a couple of hours wandering, and there's plenty to prompt interesting conversation over a glass of wine or coffee.
Gallery East will be on Stand D3 at Cambridge Art Fair. To find out more visit galleryeast.co.uk.