With several galleries in the tiny London areas of Mayfair and Knotting Hill, and one in jet-set Gstaad, Switzerland, blue-chip art purveyors Maddox Gallery have crossed the pond to set up shop on Beverly Boulevard in the Design District.
“In London we dominate,” says CEO John Russo who is sitting in the vast open white space with British artist John Tierney’s iconography exhibit Postcards from Los Angeles eclipsing the walls. “In Europe, we are the leading supplier of Banksy works and Harland Miller. We embrace their expertise.”
“LA is such a multicultural melting pot and such a gorgeous city. I’m so proud for us to be here,” says Russo. “There really is no better place to be right now and we stake our credibility and reputation that people want to come to where we are.”
Maddox sets themselves apart from other galleries by not just selling fine contemporary art and having investors and shareholders such as British heiress Petra Ecclestone, but by first and foremost giving clients the knowledge and instruction on how to build their own portfolio so you’re not just getting something pretty to put on a wall but investing wisely in your own personal collection.
Russo believes the first thing about art is you have to love it because you can invest in anything. “What we do is create excitement and passion around building and embracing a portfolio of art.” The team at the gallery relishes in helping consumers discover their own personal love of art, like discovering music for the first time and inspiring clients to take a deeper dive into the quality, subject matter, and meaning.
Those options for patrons and budding art enthusiasts visiting the natural light-filled West Hollywood gallery ranges from Damien Hirst to David Yarrow and prices from close to a million dollars to several hundred dollars for limited edition prints.
Currently, Russo travels from the U.K. to L.A. every 4-6 weeks and realized very quickly that the Los Angeles community consumes, views and buys art very differently than the rest of the world. “They are heavily reliant on expertise and people guiding them on what looks best in my home or what art is valuable right now or who has merit, and we do it a way that is educational so they are not buying blindly.”
According to Russo, “You can spend a lot of money on bad art but we encourage people to buy correctly and appropriately. The great thing about art is we don’t know what we are going to feel. It might remind us of a place that time has forgotten or that we are aspiring to reach. If you follow that passion and enthusiasm generally value and reward follow.”
As for hot tips and imminent projections, “I think the future is going to be about street art,” says Russo, and I think RETNA is a modern-day [Jean-Michel] Basquiat. He is a genius and I think it will be quite a while before we come across someone like him again and it’s great to be aware of that while the genius is still alive.”
In the land of opulence and celebrity, it’s also important to give people a truly extraordinary and unique experience. With the appointment of renowned curator Natalie Brady as the new director of Maddox Gallery Los Angeles, future plans for the gallery include hosting more intimate events such as artist talks and one-on-one time with the featured artists. Brady has established herself as an emerging influence within LA’s vibrant street art scene and she hopes to expand the reach and influence, cementing the gallery’s legacy within the art world. “I am thrilled to have been appointed as the Director of Maddox Gallery. As one of the most exciting and influential contemporary art galleries in the city, I am looking forward to broadening the exhibitions program with a diverse array of unmissable events.”
The core team, who includes creative director Jay Rutland, is also fond of the Design District area where they have already experienced a flow of interior designers and architects looking for material to fulfill their homes or projects. “We found this incredible venue with a large open space, natural light, and good foot traffic.” Russo reflects. “We have had so much support from the local businesses and cross-promotion. I love the idea of supporting each other. Our goals are the same, even for other galleries and there is plenty of space for everyone. We treat everyone with respect and integrity. We have even put art in some of the neighborhood businesses. The spirit of partnership and camaraderie is why we chose this area.”
Maddox Gallery Website
8811 Beverly Blvd.