Jane Simpson’s gallery launches a “Selection Box”
Galerie Simpson, a non profit gallery, is a publishing label founded by artist Jane Simpson. Producing limited edition artworks made in close consultation with internationally renowned artists.
The gallery will launch a Selection Box on the 22nd of April, 2016. It is a selection of 18 editions which have been created especially for this project and donated by the artists to help support the Swansea gallery.
When someone buys a Selection Box, they will receive the artworks in a unique wooden box, only 50 of which have been created. The works featured in each box will go on show at the launch party, and offer a fascinating snapshot of the British art world today.
The combined art has been conservatively estimated as being worth around £4,000, and the first two to go on sale will cost half of that at £2,000 before rising to £3,000.
"It's nothing like the real value of the work, it's a massive discount," says Galerie Simpson owner Jane Simpson, pictured with pet dog Sonny, who points out that with Arts Council of Wales's Collectorplan, anyone could can start their own collection of contemporary art for around £200 a month.
"It will pay for the rent, upkeep, and a small amount for the exhibitions for the next three years," she adds.
Production methods for the works included range from watercolours, lino cuts, wood block and silkscreen to gold plated sculptures, cast resin, vegetable prints, photo collage and digital prints, many of which are made in Swansea by Swansea Print Workshop.
"There is truly something for everyone in this cornucopia, which contains similar voices and overlapping interests, each work featuring hand finishing or multiple layers of creation to create something truly special."
Jane Simpson herself has been a leading figure in the British art world for two decades, having been championed as a graduate by Damien Hirst and featured in seminal exhibitions including Some Went Mad, Some Ran Away in 1994.
In order to create the Selection Box, she got in touch with friends she had made during years of being immersed in the British art scene, and the result reads like a who's who of important turn-of-the-century artists.
They include Fiona Banner, Sir Peter Blake, Angela de la Cruz, Abigail Fallis, Tom Gidley, Georgie Hopton, Rachel Howard, Des Hughes, Gary Hume, Catrin Saran James, Michael Landy, Simon Periton, Jamie Reid, Sarah Staton, Gavin Turk, Rachel Whiteread, Clare Woods and Jane Simpson.
"These are well-known artists, many of whom have previously shown at the gallery, and I've been delighted by the spirit of goodwill in which these pieces have been donated," says Jane.
"I want the gallery to have a future — it's championing local artists in an environment that wouldn't look out of place in the West End of London," she says.
The money raised will also free Jane up to make more of the sculptures for which she is best known: by combining freezer technology with household items, she has been able to create widely acclaimed sculptures that evolve and grow as the ice forms. After years living in London, she feels her new base in Swansea has given her the perfect environment in which to be creative again.
"Since coming back to Swansea the art scene is fabulous, really active and positive, especially with the support of Coastal Housing," she says of the local talent such as Catrin Saran James who features in the box.
"But I've reached a point where I desperately want to make my sculptures again — I feel the time is right, and I'm in the right place."