The majority of Sri Lanka’s most prominent artists have exhibited either at Hempel Galleries or at the Colombo Art Biennale (CAB), and CAB 2012 hosted the largest number of artists participating in one single international art event in the country.
The Hempel Galleries Team is very excited to be reopening its gallery doors in Galle Fort’s Pedlar Street. The Gallery will be launching with an exhibition of eight artists including; Anoli Perera who’s recent success in Delhi is now leading to her career expanding in Hong Kong during the prestigious Basel Hong Kong Art Fair; Cora de Lang, transcultural nomad whose works are collected in state collections internationally, and Pala Pothupitiye who’s famous map-work was awarded first prize at the 2010 Hong Kong based Sovereign Asian Art Prize. Hempel Galleries will also introduce young exciting evolving artists such as digital artist Janananda Laksiri, and Pradeep Thalawatte who’s eye opening works from Jaffna were recently shown in Colombo.
History of Hempel Galleries in Galle Fort
The first incarnation of Hempel Galleries was born as ‘Gallery 71’ in Galle Fort’s Pedlar Street in 2004, which hosted exhibitions, bringing artists from around the country from as far as Kandy to the heritage site of Galle Fort. Although a seemingly sleepy and isolated location at the time, the exhibitions helped to raise awareness and generate an interest in the latent and powerful underground contemporary art movement in Sri Lanka. The bonds that were forged between Hempel and the artists, and in particular Theertha Artist Collective over this period, inspired discussions that eventually gave birth to the concept and launch of the Colombo Art Biennale in 2009.
Hempel Galleries opened its second gallery space In Galle Fort in Dec 2009 with ‘Art at the Edge’; hosting group shows exhibiting works by participating Sri Lankan artists at CAB. This collaborative venture aimed to further expose the work of CAB beyond the five day cultural event which took place in Colombo.
In 2010 Hempel Galleries opened its first Gallery in Colombo, which provided a space for artists to develop and showcase their recent bodies of work in the form of solo and two man shows. Simultaneously, ongoing group shows were displayed at the HG/CAB office gallery space also in central Colombo, which provided the opportunity for interested parties to view works by various artists, receive consultations from the HG and CAB staff, as well as have access to printed material such as catalogues and books available.
2013, sees Hempel Galleries re-opening in Galle Fort. Continuing to work on exposing artists to new audiences.
About Hempel Galleries
Hempel Galleries, a venture that primarily represents Sri Lankan Artists, works collaboratively with the Colombo Art Biennale as well as other art organizations and curators, establishing a holistic approach to promoting contemporary artists in Sri Lanka.
The ethos of Hempel Galleries is to motivate artists in the development of their careers taking a multi-faceted approach by working with artist collectives as well as with individual artists. HG has also supported and is instrumental in creating opportunities for Sri Lankan artists to further their careers abroad, through exhibitions, artist in residency programmes and nominations for international art prizes.
The majority of Sri Lanka’s most prominent artists have exhibited either at HG or CAB, and CAB 2012 hosted the largest number of artists participating in one single international art event in the country.
Through its interactions with CAB, artists, art organizations and curators, HG’s objective is to continuously encourage a high calibre of art practice and enhance the curatorial practice that will lead to a vibrant art scene in Sri Lanka.
Hempel Galleries Team: Annoushka Hempel, Puja Srivastava, Lalith Manage, Sonali Pitiala, Ruth MacDonald
Opening preview Friday 17th May 7.00 pm – 8.30 pm
Hempel Galleries – 6 Pedlar Street, Galle Fort | +94774282067| Opening Hours 9.00 am – 5.00 pm Mon-Fri