South London galleries join forces and relocate to Fitzrovia as emerging art market matures

Two galleries which cut their teeth in Deptford, southeast London, are relocating to larger premises in the centre of the UK capital.

Castor and Indigo+Madder are jointly taking over a 2,200 sq ft lower ground floor space in Fitzrovia, operating separate exhibition programmes but sharing a reception, office, viewing room and other facilities—a model more frequently seen in New York.

The new space opens on 1 September with a group show across both galleries aptly titled, There Goes the Neighbourhood, which examines ideas of community, urbanity and what it means to be marginalised.

Describing the new venue as a “mini mega gallery”, Castor’s founder Andy Wicks notes how it’s a “really exciting time” to be moving into Fitzrovia, with galleries including Workplace, Vitrine, Lungley and Alice Black recently opening close to Edel Assanti’s new space.

He adds: “It’s great to see more and more young galleries taking on central London spaces, which in the time of the mega gallery can only be a positive thing.”

Wicks founded Castor in 2016, initially renting for free a small basement in a café next to Goldsmiths in New Cross. After programming 12 solo exhibitions in 12 months, Wicks relocated to Resolution Way in Deptford alongside a host of other creative businesses and project spaces. In 2018, after expanding the gallery’s footprint twice, he turned the project space into a commercial gallery, and currently represents seven artists.

Of the decision to move with Indigo+Madder, Wicks says he had noticed how, in New York, galleries “were more used to collaboration with the likes of Shrine and Sargents Daughters joining forces”. He adds: “When I started to look for a new space I was keen to find one which would enable us to continue and expand on this joint offering, while not compromising on space.”

Indigo+Madder, which was set up to facilitate more nuanced conversations around South Asia and its diaspora and has a history of championing artists of colour, began in 2018 with a pop-up show in London. The gallery moved to Resolution Way in 2019. As gallery director Krittika Sharma says: “When we began looking for a permanent space in 2018, we wanted something that was embedded in London’s emerging art scene, and being part of the multi-disciplinary group of spaces in Deptford has been incredible.”

She adds: “The fact that we can expand and move forward with Castor, exploring a model that is both innovative and collaborative is exciting. We are now looking forward to taking these collaborative energies to a bigger scale in central London.”

https://www.theartnewspaper.com/2022/06/23/new-generation-of-mini-megas-emerges-as-south-london-galleries-relocate-to-fitzrovia

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