Saatchi Yates discovers new talent at new London gallery

art market

Lucy Hoy

Portrait of Phoebe Saatchi Yates and Arthur Yates, 2023. Courtesy of Saatchi Yates, London.

At ages 28 and 32, respectively, Phoebe Saatchi Yates and Arthur Yates are among the youngest artists in London today. But during their short history like Sachi YatesThe pair have been bringing a refreshing attitude to the heart of London’s commercial art scene since arriving on Cork Street in Mayfair in 2020. However, less than three years later, they’ve plonked more sticks into St James’s, just a five-minute walk from their location. The former and a stone’s throw from Buckingham Palace and Christie’s.

Phoebe and Arthur’s enthusiasm for luxury is reflected in the sheer size of their new 10,000-square-foot gallery in St. James, ready with its immaculate white walls, grand paintings, and freshly polished floor. So excited were the couple, that they met Artsy before the gallery opened in January.

Exterior view of Saatchi Yates, London. Courtesy of Saatchi Yeats, London.

The juxtaposition of old and new is also important to Sachi Yeats’ vision of Phoebe and Arthur. “We always have one foot in the past and one foot in the future,” said Phoebe. This mirrored their move to St James’s. As Arthur noted, “London is London – where exciting things happen in the art world, and it holds a connected place of activity for emerging and international artists. But the rich history of St James’s is so important to us.”

Hidden away from the main gallery space is a room for secondary market artwork available for private viewing. But while the excellent artwork in the secondary market of the likes Willem de Kooning And Pablo Picasso They make up half of Saatchi Yates’ oeuvre, and Phoebe and Arthur’s primary ambition is for young contemporary artists to get the blockbuster treatment. The husband and wife duo are steadfast about their ambitions to focus on solo exhibitions in the new space.

“We’re not interested in testing the market with group shows,” said Phoebe. “We just want to show artists that we trust 100% and are going to be with them for the long haul.” Throwing a thoughtful look at Phoebe, Arthur added, “We’re all into some kind of people.”

Saatchi Yates wants to change the landscape for young artists presenting their platforms. For example, the 33-year-old Korean illustrator Sojin Lee She exhibited with Saatchi Yates in early 2021 having never sold a painting in her career. Before long, her works sold for more than £30,000.

Most artists will only be able to land a show of this magnitude at their peak, but Saatchi Yates makes it easy for artists early in their career. “In this space in St. James, it’s like having a premium-market level gallery, but we’re doing it with younger artists,” explained Phoebe.

Omar Al-Laheeb, Installation View in Saatchi Yates, 2023. Courtesy of Saatchi Yates, London.

At the grand opening, Phoebe and Arthur collect 18 large paintings by the 37-year-old Lebanese artist. Omar El Lahib, who is currently working in Cologne. The artist was studying fine art at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf when the couple first discovered him via Instagram. Hanging on the gallery walls are a series of mesmerizing nocturnal dreamscapes of flames.

“We thought, ‘Wow, these starry palettes are like a mix of Edvard Munch And Vincent Van GoghArthur explained. Omar then told us that his inspiration came from a picture of a red-headed woman he found while browsing Facebook one day. Although Flame deals with social media, it is his rigorous academic training and historical art references that make his artwork truly amazing.

The couple, who have been together for over a decade, have always shared a love of collecting art. As the daughter of Charles Saatchi – one of the most influential patrons of British art in the late 20th century, and founder Saatchi Gallery In Chelsea – Phoebe does not underestimate her father’s influence on the couple’s art world project. “together and with [my] Dad, we’ve been looking at emerging artists and student shows for years,” she said. Both Phoebe and Arthur worked at the Saatchi Gallery, which “has always been about great artists,” Phoebe said.

Later this year, Saatchi Yates will feature the popular TikTok artist’s work BiggioHe is originally from the United States and has more than 100,000 followers on the platform. During our interview, Phoebe pulled out her phone to show some of the artist’s ASMR-style TikTok videos, which reveal an art process that involves lots of airbrushing and surface scratching. Phoebe noted that social media has a “democratizing effect” on art discovery: “Young students can come to our gallery, find the artist online, and see how these paintings are created,” she told Artsy.

With such a strong track record over such a short period of time, the gallery has already become a regular haunt for young collectors. She’s also known for dwelling in temporary spaces, from a French mansion to Miami’s Design District.

Phoebe and Arthur believe that Sachi Yates represents the artists of their generation: “We show the right artists, in the right places, at the right time,” said Phoebe. “For young collectors, this means they can buy art from their contemporaries. It’s like buying a piece of your youth.”

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