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16th February 2021

Q&A with Castle Fine Art

In the last year, our homes have become more important than ever. Lockdown has encouraged people to refocus on interior design with many choosing to invest in everything from new furniture to fabulous pieces of art.

We talk to Danny and Beth from the Castle Fine Art flagship store at Mailbox to find out about the latest art trends, advice when buying a special piece for your home and what they’re looking forward to once the store is fully reopen.

For those looking to source their first piece of art for their home, do you have any tips on what people should consider?

Danny: Buy what you love. It’s as straight forward as that.

Beth: Weirdly, it’s probably one of the few first purchases in life that you probably shouldn’t over think. Let your emotions guide you to the right piece of art…ask as many questions in the gallery as you want to and, if you feel happy with the answers and comfortable with the price, go for it. It’s really only when your first piece of art is at home on the wall that the journey begins, and you start to see the impact of well-chosen art. Your learning curve from that point is exponential but initially, trust your gut.

Some quick tips:

  • Keep an open mind – what you initially dislike you might come to love later.
  • Art galleries are deceptively large spaces, so bear in mind the art will appear much bigger at home.
  • If you and your partner don’t share the same taste in art, there’s no need for either to compromise, just create zones within your home.

Frames can be an important addition to artwork, what should people consider when choosing a frame?

Danny: There is an art to framing, and the decision on how best to present a piece can be crucial. The pieces on display in the gallery come with an example of what frame we think suits it best, however it’s an entirely subjective decision influenced by a collector’s preference.

Beth: The frame choice is critical to how the final piece of art will look and feel. For this reason, we have an expert team, including the artist themselves, who make all the framing decisions. Unless you feel very strongly that a frame will not work, trust the choice that has been made.

What pieces are people buying during lockdown? Have you noticed any trends or colours?

Danny: Our collectors are, like everyone, trapped indoors – so the vibrant and open landscapes of Lawrence Coulson are proving popular. People are spending the vast bulk of their leisure time listening to music and watching films, so the work of the Bisaillon Brothers, which celebrates pop culture, is also attracting a lot of attention.

Beth: This last year certainly has been an unusual time in everyone’s lives, and there have been a couple of noticeable trends that have permeated art buying decisions. Most apparent is that anyone who had been thinking about acquiring work by any artist has now gone for it. The caution that one might expect has been offset by the amount of money everyone has saved on holidays, cars and other ‘luxury’ purchases. These funds have now found their way onto the walls in many a home. What better way to reaffirm or reignite your love of home by introducing a wonderful, inspiring work of art. This brings a new meaning to ‘retail therapy’.

Second is the desire we’ve seen for art with strong narrative elements – so art that tells a story. For example, Lorenzo Quinn’s sculptures are based on his ideals and principles both in his personal life and in the way he sees the world at large. They evoke strong emotional reactions, and this seems to have struck a chord with our collectors.

Bisaillon Brothers, Beatlemania

What is your favourite artist or work of art in the gallery at the moment?

Danny: ‘Opium’ by Bob Dylan from his recently released The Asia Series. Representing the work of one of the most significant cultural icons of the last hundred years is a huge privilege. The image exemplifies Dylan’s desire to take risks and constantly reinvent himself.

Beth: I have long been an admirer of John Myatt and have recently purchased ‘Peach Trees in Bloom in the Style of Vincent van Gogh’. Even my many years’ experience didn’t prepare me for how brilliant that piece of art would look at home. However good art looks in a gallery, brace yourself for a very pleasant surprise when it’s on your wall!

Opium, Bob Dylan; John Myatt, Peach Trees in Bloom in the Style of Vincent van Gogh

Are there any collections that are coming up that you’re excited about?

Danny: Sir Billy Connolly is a national treasure and his art is the product of a very intriguing mind.  Now he’s retired from stand-up, his artwork is the best way for collectors to see the world through his very unique point of view.

Beth: I concur!

Born On A Rainy Day Portfolio 2020 (Framed set of 6), Billy Connolly

The gallery is currently open for click and collect, what do you miss the most about being open?

Danny: Interacting with people and introducing them to new work. Our artists have been very productive during lockdown and we’re looking forward to showing their pieces off in the flesh when we reopen.

Beth: Our gallery in the Mailbox is a space that is meant to be shared. It’s vibrant, inspiring, colourful and intimate. The range of art is from £500 to £500,000 with all styles to suit all tastes. Not being able to share the space, whether it’s with potential collectors, seasoned clients, or people who love to spend time in galleries, is such a shame. That said, we are extremely grateful to have weathered the storm that has ravaged the high street and excited to be opening our doors again soon.

Castle Fine Art is open for Click & Collect orders. Take a look online to discover the latest collection or talk to an Art Consultant. www.castlefineart.com