A 34-year-old islander with a passion for painting she never pursued has recently changed careers drastically, moving from finance to a new art gallery thanks to the support of a mixed media artist.
Holly Walsh and Charlie Lewis have partnered up to open ‘The Space Art Gallery’ on Pitt Street in the location previously occupied by Ian and Ruth Rolls’ Pitt Stream Gallery.
The Space will open on 1 October with ‘Rescued Moments’ an exhibition featuring the work of David Gleave, a street photographer, who works mainly in black-and-white.
Holly, whose background is in finance and trust, explained that when she saw Charlie’s ad to work in the gallery and work under his direction, she was already considering her job to return to her artistic roots.
“I did art at school,” she said. “It was just something I enjoyed, I remember doing quite well at it. I don’t really know why I didn’t pursue it and I always regretted that.
“It was always something I did for fun. I got two children and not much time, so it’s just been a hobby when I can fit it in. In the last year or two, I started getting back into painting.
“I had been thinking about a change in career but it’s hard to get into that world if you do not have qualifications or experience. I enjoyed my job, but I was never passionate about it. To be given the opportunity to get paid to do something I really love, I feel really lucky and fortunate. I was very lucky to get offered the opportunity to change my career so drastically, it’s super exciting.”
Pictured: The first exhibition at The Space will showcase the work of street photographer David Gleave.
Charlie, a mixed media artist who creates 3D paintings, said he picked Holly to run The Space with because she is a “good all-rounder, good business experiences and a talented artist”.
Holly, who focuses on portraits which she mostly paints with acrylics, said that while their style differ they also share similarities.
“Charlie sends me ideas and he gives me enough freedom to add my own bits,” she explained about their collaboration. “He is quite hands on in showing me his style. He is quite keen to see me develop, which is amazing for him to put in the time and show me new skills.”
With The Space, Charlie wants to promote “new talented locals” and help them understand how they can share it far and wide. The gallery will host 12 exhibitions a year, six individual ones as well as six mixed ones.
Pictured: An example of Charlie's work.
The first exhibition showcases the work of one of Charlie’s friends, whom he described as “a good example of an artist that has created a large volume of great work that is worthy of displaying and being a part of any modern art collection”.
“It will be a little bit different to anything that we have had in Jersey,” Holly said. “Charlie likes the idea of finding people who have not necessarily had the opportunity to show their work before.”
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