The new Stone House Gallery in Ludlow will open to the public on 6 December. The gallery is located at Old Stone House, Corve Street, an imposing property thought to have been designed by Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum architect, Charles Cockerell.
The ground floor gallery within the elegant Grade II home, will open with an exhibition, curated by owners James and Gabrielle Service, of exceptional works by select artists: Lesley Forrest, Penny Hardy, Emsie Sharp and Richard Sorrell.
Paintings, sculptures, hand-blown glass and wearable art will be shown to best advantage with all the natural light and space afforded by the large sash windows and high ceilings.
Integrated within the gallery, Gabrielle has set up a millinery studio, the realisation of a child-hood ambition. Having spent the last five years learning the artisan craft and techniques of hat-making, a collection of chic chapeaux is on display; perfect accessories for a special occasion, or style aficionados.
James and Gabrielle Service, Owners of Stone House Gallery, said:
“Our ambition has been to create a pioneering gallery space promoting artists whose specific talents inspire us. We are extremely excited to launch this brand-new venture, after being interested by art, in its many forms, throughout our previous careers. We both have a background in the auction world and will hopefully be offering some fresh talent for Ludlow to admire and enjoy.
“We aim to tempt and provoke visitors with inspirational ideas for adding individuality for the home or special gifts. Private commissions from our artists can be undertaken and we are happy to guide clients throughout this process. James offers bespoke advice on buying and selling at auction houses, acting as a mentor for clients, accompanying them to salesrooms and acting on their behalf.”
James and Gabrielle moved into their new Ludlow home in September, having previously lived in Devon. The couple have had ties with the town for the past 20 years, visiting son Toby. Auctioneering is in the blood, with Toby an auctioneer at the auction house Brightwells, in Leominster. Gabrielle has links to Shropshire from her schooldays, attending girls’ school Acton Reynald.
A small collection of gloves will also be available at Stone House Gallery, in homage to the house’s original owner, a wealthy glove manufacturer.