The Saatchi Gallery is situated in Duke of York Square in Chelsea, London. The world-famous gallery showcases contemporary works of art in a 70,000 sq.ft. exhibition space, which aims to inspire a passion for contemporary art in everyone. The gallery hosts works of art by young artists and international artists who are relatively unknown in the UK, and since its creation in 1985 it has provided low profile artists an opportunity to kickstart their careers.
So, how did the Saatchi Gallery come to be?
Well, it was founded by Charles Saatchi, who is known to us today as a successful businessman and millionaire. Saatchi was born in Iraq in 1943 but moved to London with his family in the late 40s. He was raised in the Finchley area of London where he attended Christ’s College. After completing his education, Saatchi landed his first job at a company called Benton & Bowles where he started his career as a copywriter. Eventually, in 1967 he opened up Cramer Saatchi, a creative consultancy business. However, in 1970 he left his consultancy business behind and founded an advertising agency called Saatchi & Saatchi with his brother Maurice. The family business venture went from strength to strength, attracting high profile, international brands. During the 1980s, Saatchi & Saatchi was the largest advertising agency in the world.
The success of the advertising agency meant that Saatchi was able to focus his attention to his other passion in life, contemporary art. In 1985 he opened his own art gallery so that he could share his collection that he’d been carefully growing. The gallery was located in an old paint factory in St John’s Wood. To begin with, the gallery showed mainly new American Art. Saatchi had an obsession with US pop culture from an early age and was a fan of Elvis Presley, Little Richard and Chuck Berry. His love for US pop culture influences his taste in art. One of the first pieces of art he purchased was by Sol LeWitt, a minimalist artist based in New York.
However, Saatchi did diversify his collection. In 1992 he hosted a series of exhibits dedicated to showcasing the work of young British artists. Work by young Damian Hirst actually featured in one of the exhibits.
The Saatchi Gallery influenced art in Britain since it opened, despite being plagued by a few controversies over the years. In 2010, Saatchi donated the gallery to the British public and it is now known as the Museum of Contemporary Art for London.
Looking for a perfect way to end your day’s visit to the Saatachi Gallery? Why not check out the Andipa Gallery or visit us here for some authentic French food.
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