Gallery 286 is a private art gallery situated in a Victorian terraced house in Earl’s Court, London SW5. Having found the property in 1996 and realised its potential as a home/studio/gallery, my wife, the painter/sculptor Camilla Shivarg, and I spent a year and a half restoring what is one of the few remaining complete period houses on the road and creating somewhere we could live and work and hold exhibitions. Initially the plan was to show Camilla’s work and the holographic artists with whom I have been involved for many years but we soon broadened our remit to include work by a wide variety of artists we admire.
The gallery occupies two principal spaces; the first, on the ground floor overlooking the street, has a high ceiling, Victorian mouldings and antique furniture, giving it a rather grand, traditional art gallery feel, but we have found that its red-painted walls set off works of all types surprisingly well. One client painted his own walls the same colour to complement a painting he had first seen here.
Visitors are invited into the Red Gallery for a drink when they arrive and they frequently look around and comment on how nice it is to see art in a domestic context. That room has always been the dining room for the house and we still hold dinner parties there, surrounded by whatever happens to be on show. Not infrequently I enjoy living with a particular work so much that it has to become part of the Reserve Collection I have made for when no exhibition is on in the gallery.
The other exhibition space, in the basement, has a more contemporary gallery look, with white walls, floor and window blinds. The ceiling in the White Gallery is quite high for a basement and the rear window looks onto the garden and lets in a lovely afternoon light. The red gallery has a picture hanging system and both galleries have versatile track lighting.
Behind the house is a surprisingly large garden for Central London and visitors feel they have found an oasis just behind the bustling Earl’s Court Road. Redesigned by Camilla when we moved here, the garden has regularly won prizes in local horticultural competitions and Camilla is renowned for her ingenious plant combinations. On summer evenings it provides the perfect overspill to a crowded private view and another space to exhibit sculpture.
We hold two or three private views per show, 8-10 exhibitions per year, and if you would like to receive email notifications of these, please sign up for our mailing list. Otherwise, the gallery is usually open on Wednesday afternoons and can be visited by appointment at other times.
We exhibit an eclectic mixture of painting, sculpture, photography and mixed media and I like to include holography at least once a year. Most of the time you will find pictures on the wall that you can buy and gain pleasure from living with but I hope you will also just enjoy visiting the house, meeting interesting people and experiencing the occasional surprise encounter with something exceptional.
Wet-plate collodion portrait of Jonathan Ross by Kasia Wozniak
Gallery 286 regularly shows work from the Jonathan Ross Hologram Collection.
This international archive has its own site located at www.jrholocollection.com
Here you will find images, artist biographies, exhibition details and information about the varied aspects of creative and commercial holography.