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Lehmann Maupin Expands to London in Spite of Pandemic Fears

Although the coronavirus pandemic is still ongoing, signs that the art market is returning to life are here, and the latest comes from the blue-chip gallery Lehmann Maupin, which currently has spaces in New York, Hong Kong, and Seoul. To those three venues, it will add another on a new continent: Europe.

This fall, the gallery will open a new outpost in London, marking Lehmann Maupin’s first space in Europe. Unlike the spaces in the U.S. and Asia, the London gallery will have a different bent. Instead of solo shows by gallery artists, it will feature site-specific installations, activations, and performances. 

“The world is changing rapidly, and we are listening to it,” gallery cofounder Rachel Lehmann said in a statement. “We are taking an artist-centric approach with London. I like to think of the space as an extension of our artists’ studios, a space for contemplation, innovation and experimentation.”

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The gallery will be located at Cromwell Place, a newly opened exhibition and coworking complex in London’s museums district, not far from Serpentine Galleries and the Victoria and Albert Museum. Cromwell Place comprises five Grade II listed Victorian townhouses that offer viewing rooms, art storage, and gallery space to be rented on a temporary basis by institutions and arts professionals. Lehmann Maupin’s London gallery will span three converted period rooms on the first floor and measure about 730 square feet. It is the only enterprise with a permanent residence in the complex.

The gallery will open with a residency with English painter, writer, and filmmaker Billy Childish. Through October 25, Childish will use the space as an active studio, inviting the public to interact with him as he works on a series of new paintings inspired by  a book of autobiographical photographs to be published in tandem with Lehmann Maupin London’s opening. Inaugural programming also includes a presentation of work by Kader Attia, Shirazeh Houshiary, Lari Pittman, and Nari Ward. 

London is my home,” Isabella Icoz, senior director of the new gallery, told ARTnews.  “I was born and raised here, and it’s why after ten years with the gallery I’m especially proud to be opening Lehmann Maupin London. While it’s our first physical space here, we are not new to the city.”

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