Interview with Cathy Lomax (Transition Gallery)

Published Oct, 2016

Cathy Lomax. Photo credit: Rose Bradshaw.

How did the name Transition come about?

I set up the gallery after finishing my MA Fine Art at Central Saint Martins — it was a transitionary project and I didn’t expect the gallery to still be around ten years later. It also seems to fit with the idea of the gallery as a space for artists to try out new ideas — the work doesn’t need to be finished and slick.

What are the key ingredients for setting up a gallery?

All I had was an empty space which I was allowed to use rent free and I knew some artists from my time at college. This is really more than you need. A gallery can be set up in your own home or in a cupboard or anywhere.

Has your modus operandi changed over time?

It hasn’t consciously changed but in reality, I think it probably has as I have grown more knowledgeable and made more contacts. We get many more proposals for shows from artists now. When the gallery first opened I showed everyone that expressed an interest in showing.

How do you find new talent?

I try and visit degree shows and keep up to date with what is happening. There are no real rules about the kind of artists we show — it is just a case of finding work that we think is exciting. I always like to put artists together in shows that are from different places and generations if at all possible — I hate cliques and don’t want to always show the same group of people (although inevitably there are artists that have shown a number of times at the gallery because I really like what they do).

Once you find artists you like how long does it typically take to put the show together?

It very much depends on the project that is being curated. Artists obviously need time to make new work if this is what the show demands. I am trying to keep the programme a little more open at the moment so we can respond to work we like quickly.

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