Katherine Richards tells us about her Art Gallery Open House and sponsorship of an AOH student bursary

Photo credit: Syl Ojalla @brighton_photography_studio 

Hi Katherine.
This year you are both an Open House, at Katherine Richards Art Gallery on the Independent Trail, and sponsor of the AOH Student bursary. Can you tell us about the student bursary and your reasons for sponsoring the AOH 40 Anniversary student exhibition?
I have been in design all my working life and enjoyed success in this field so this was an opportunity to give something back to help young aspiring artists show their work to a wider audience – as well as raising the profile of my new art gallery.

University of Brighton Fine Art student, Megan Ryan – Journey (at the Regency Town House basement) Photo credit: Syl Ojalla @brighton_photography_studio 


Would you like to tell us a bit about the exhibition and the students’ work?
I was struck by the originality of their work and would have liked to have seen work from more of the students and perhaps some development processes.

University of Brighton Fine Art student, Finn Gayton – Lorry Boy (at the Regency Town House basement) Photo credit: Syl Ojalla @brighton_photography_studio 


We’d like to hear about your own exhibition! Firstly, how do you select the artists you represent?
Essentially, I look for art I personally like and which resonates in some way. I curate whilst I’m selecting so that I can be confident the pieces will work when I bring them together. I don’t mind who the artist is or how much experience they have had, but I am discerning and look out for particular skills and/or potential. Of course, whether art has been created using particular ‘skill’ is subjective to some extent, so I choose according to my own judgments.

Katherine Richards Art Gallery.
Photo credit: Syl Ojalla @brighton_photography_studio  

What are the skills you need to curate a successful exhibition?
Being able to visualise the finished arrangement is really important and understanding the aesthetic balance of shape, form and colour. My work in design has always been about these things, from being a theatre stage designer to my current work in interior design. Curating art in my gallery is simply an extension of the interior design work; this cross-over is deliberate and dovetails the two businesses together. I’ve found that people who love interior design are generally interested in art too, and I offer both under one roof.

Katherine Richards Art Gallery.
Photo credit: Syl Ojalla @brighton_photography_studio  

Would you like to tell us about your own artwork?
I have created a collection of limited-edition table lamps. I sculpt them in clay, then resin cast and finally I hand gild each one with 24ct gold leaf.  They are detailed, story-telling pieces and are dramatic, stand-alone pieces which add originality and ambience to a space. One of the lamps, ‘Cuenca’, was selected by the Saatchi Gallery to show on the Saatchi Screen.

Katherine Richards- Cuenca

The smaller sculptural works currently on show at the gallery are whimsical, humorous figures, simple in form, but expressive.

Katherine Richards  – The Secret

You have a new collection of work opening on 20th May in your gallery, midway through the AOH festival. Can you tell us a little about what we will be able to see?
A wide variety of original works from 12 artists all working in different mediums and concepts. I’m delighted to have Chloe McCarrick, an internationally-selling artist, headlining  the exhibition. Her work will be displayed in the window and is based around historical, ground-breaking women who achieved great success, but who were never recognised for their work. This is unfortunately a theme we hear all too often, so my curation of Chloe’s work in the window will be powerful and eye-catching to encourage people to further explore the brilliant, interesting women she is representing.

Chloe McCarrick – The Golden Age of Aeronautics
(Katherine’s Road Map to the Moon)

Is there anything else you would like to tell us?
As any artist and gallery curator will tell you, it’s a rollercoaster ride combining creativity and business. We are thrilled to have been nominated for the Muddy Stilettos ‘Best Art Space in Sussex’ Award and look forward to welcoming lots more visitors during the AOH Festival.

Katherine Richards Art Gallery 

Visit Katherine Richards Art Gallery 
At 111 Portland Road, Hove, BN3 5DP
On the Independent Trail