Exhibition News October 2017 - Page 39

FEATURE The art of events EN pays a visit to the most stylish venue in town N estled amongst the shops and restaurants of Chelsea, in Duke of York Square, is an historic Grade II-listed building housing the very latest in contemporary art. When Saatchi Gallery fi rst opened to the public in 1985 it attracted a relatively small audience of art afi cionados, seeking out the latest work by talented contemporary artists. Since then, and since its 2008 move to Duke of York Square, the gallery’s audience has grown to more than 1.5 million visitors each year. Alongside this growth in popularity there has been a steady increase in exhibition business, with many organisers showing an interest in the venue’s iconic cultural status, luxury offering and convenient west London location. “We love to host high-end luxury trade shows that sit well alongside the Saatchi Gallery brand,” Rosie Courtney, head of operations at GSP Venues, tells EN. “Our space is both versatile and adaptable; that’s partly due to the design and the size of the venue.” Bespoke event management company GSP Venues has been responsible for the Gallery for almost ten years, and has grown the venue’s exhibition offering steadily over that time. “In recent years, it’s changed quite a lot,” explains Courtney. “When we started back in 2008 it was more drinks receptions and media events, but now organisers are grasping the extent of what they can do at the gallery. Because it’s such a fl exible space, organisers recognise what a great exhibition space it is. A unique selling point, adds Courtney, is the ‘blank canvas’ nature of the venue. “Once the art is removed you are left with 70,000 square feet of clean white space onto which a client’s vision can be realised,” she explains. “This makes the Saatchi Gallery one of the most versatile venues in London, and indeed Europe. “We host a bi-annual fashion trade show called Scoop. They hire the entire space and like to use the gallery’s artwork as a backdrop. The exhibition stands are set in front of the artwork so they have a background for their stands, which gives the event a fl uid and dramatic backdrop.” The Gallery’s unique events offering has been taken advantage by organisers including Media 10 and ITE group, as well as well-known global brands such as Patek Philippe, Chanel, Hermes, Rolls Royce, Glamour magazine and Michael Kors. These events are complemented by the venue’s extensive list of experienced preferred suppliers. “London’s highest standards are paramount to the success of our events, therefore we have an elite preferred suppliers list to refl ect 39 Words: Nicola Macdonald this,” continues Courtney. “This extensive list provides services for each element of an event and in turn gives our clients the diversity needed to produce once in a lifetime experiences; from experts in 3D mapping to caterers linking to famous chefs such as Heston Blumenthal, from traditional canapés to scientifi c concoctions, we have the services and large choice to achieve London’s top events.” The gallery has up to 14 spaces available for organisers to hire, which can be cleared of ar Gv&"VgBvFFRv&26GR2VVR7W'&VFrf"FRWfVB( FRvW'6vW2G2'BW&F0F&VRFfW"FW2V"6vR666VGVPFR'B&VBFRW&F2FBvRfR( Ч626W'FW( v^( &RfW'fW&R( ФFW&2bFW&FfVVW2@6VV2FBFR6F6vW'26fFVFǐfVBG26RrvFG2VVRVf"&v6W'22fW&RWW'76RvF&67VGW&7F'TW&FWw26V7F&W"#