Abstract art painting. From Modla Painting exhibition at Maximilian William.
Modal Painting at Maximilian William.

Relatively new arrivals on the Fitzrovia art scene are Maximillian William (47 Mortimer Street) who opened in September 2019. Since 2015, the gallery has operated a nomadic existence, organising shows in various spaces internationally. It has a small but interesting roster of gallery artists, including Coco Capitan, Somaya Critchlow, Magda Skupinska and Reginald Sylvester II, all of whom it took on at early stages in their careers.

Past exhibitors at the gallery include such international big names as Philip Guston, and their upcoming exhibition Modal Painting (provisionally March to April) features leading British artists Sir Frank Bowling and John Hoyland in a survey of abstract art curated by Oscar Wollheim. I particularly liked the quote by American abstract expressionist artist Ed Clark that introduces the exhibition: ‘Art has its own conception of beauty … all great artists can only do what they esteem to be right. No matter how it appears at first, it will always be beautiful.’

Painting by Rafael ‘Randy’ Klein, at Zari Gallery. Art.
At Zari Gallery (73 Newman Street) Paradise features new work by Coney Island born artist Rafael ‘Randy’ Klein.

At Zari Gallery (73 Newman Street) Paradise features new work by Coney Island born artist Rafael ‘Randy’ Klein. Exuberant, vividly coloured landscapes ‘explore the ways we impose our own personal narratives on the world we inhabit … and our experience of the beauty and fragility of the natural world in the 21st century’. An impressive virtual tour of the exhibition is available on the gallery website, or by emailing info@rafaelklein.com, you can book a private visit with the artist.

Art sculpture. Part of Time Takes a Cigarette at Josh Lilley gallery.
Time Takes a Cigarette, at Josh Lilley.

Josh Lilley (44-46 Riding House Street) recently expanded into the neighbouring building at No, 40-42, a space that embodies a lot of Fitzrovia History. Over the past century, it has been home to a furrier, a delicatessen, a fascist bookstore and a travel agency. Like T J Boulting across the road, the gallery’s main exhibition area was a lower ground floor with surprisingly high ceilings. Now covering 3000 sf, completely remodelled and incorporating a double exhibition height space, it is ‘the largest storefront for culture in the neighbourhood’. It’s very encouraging to see a popular local gallery make such a serious, long-term commitment. Featuring seven painters and seven sculptors, Time Takes a Cigarette is the first group show in the new space.

Black and white image. Pinjoma (Barn Owl), 2017 by Janice Murray at Rebecca Hossack art gallery.
Pinjoma (Barn Owl), 2017 by Janice Murray at Rebecca Hossack.

Rebecca Hossack, now consolidated in a single space (2A Conway Street), has an intriguing online exhibition Black & White, a small celebration of the monochrome – pictures that play with stark contrast and graphic clarity to achieve their rich effects. The gallery cites: ‘Winter landscapes, Aubrey Beardsley, Buster Keaton, early Bridget Riley, a certain brand of Scotch whiskey, the vision of Cartier Bresson, the façade of Siena Cathedral, Paul Gascoigne during his Newcastle days’ as reminders of the beauty and power of Black and White. All very evocative, as are the works in the show, which includes paintings, prints, drawings and photographs.

(At time of writing, unless specified, galleries are closed, but all galleries mentioned have images online.)

Featured Galleries

Maximillian William, 47 Mortimer Street — Mar – Apr (TBC): various artists Modal Painting

Zari Gallery, 73 Newman Street — To 26 Feb: Rafael Klein Paradise

Josh Lilley, 44-46Riding House Street — To 25 Mar: various artists Time Takes a Cigarette

Rebecca Hossack Gallery, 2a Conway Street — Online: various artists Black & White

FITZROVIA ART GALLERIES (correct as of 10 February 2021)

Alison Jacques Gallery, 16-18 Berners Street (alisonjacquesgallery.com)

Arup Phase 2, 8 Fitzroy Street (arup.com/phase2exhibitions)

Building Centre, Store Street (buildingcentre.co.uk)

Coningsby, 30 Tottenham Street (coningsbygallery.com)

David Roberts Art Foundation, 111 Great Titchfield Street (davidrobertsartfoundation.com)

Gallery Different, 14 Percy Street (gallerydifferent.co.uk)

Eclectic Gallery, 16 Newman Street (eclecticgallery.co.uk)

Edel Assanti, 74A Newman Street (edelassanti.com)

Fitzrovia Chapel, Pearson Square (fitzroviachapel.org)

Fitzrovia Gallery, 139 Whitfield Street (fitzroviagallery.co.uk)

Fold Gallery, 158 New Cavendish Street (foldgallery.com)

Grove Square Galleries, 156 New Cavendish Street (grovesquaregalleries.com)

Josh Lilley, 44-46Riding House Street (joshlilley.com)

Maximillian William, 47 Mortimer Street (maximillianwilliam.com)

Narrative Projects, 110 New Cavendish Street (narrativeprojects.com)

Pi Artworks, 55 Eastcastle Street (piartworks.com)

Pilar Corrias, 54 Eastcastle Street (pilarcorrias.com)

Rebecca Hossack Gallery, 2a Conway Street (rebeccahossack.com)

Rosenfeld, 37 Rathbone Street (galleryrosenfeld.com)

RIBA, 66 Portland Place (architecture.com)

Saunders Fine Art, 20 Charlotte Street (saundersfineart.co.uk)

Store Street Gallery, 32 Store Street (storestreetgallery.com)

Tiwani Contemporary, 16 Little Portland Street (tiwani.co.uk)

T J Boulting, 59 Riding House Street (tjboulting.com)

Tristan Hoare, 6 Fitzroy Square (tristanhoaregallery.co.uk)

Webber Gallery, 18 Newman Street (webberrepresents.com)

Woolff Gallery, 89 Charlotte Street (woolffgallery.co.uk)

Zari Gallery, 73 Newman Street (zarigallery.co.uk)