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  • Amanda Watt

Reminiscing about 'Release', my first largescale solo show in the UK for a very long time!

Presented by K. Nichols Contemporary & Varvara Roza Galleries

Gallery Eight, Duke Street, St. James's, 22 September - 8 October 2022

Release Art Exhibition, Mayfair
Exhibition images, by Nicholas Harvey

As the dust settles from my latest exhibition, I wanted to look back on the successes of the show, from the beautiful hang and brilliant people met along the way, to the very humbling press coverage before, during and after. For more information and the full catalogue of works, please visit my 'Recent Exhibitions' page.

‘Release’ was a long time coming. Originally scheduled for May 2020 in Athens, my agent and I were in my studio, packing up paintings ready to ship as we descended into the first COVID-19 lockdown. We then thought May 2021 would be a safe bet, but how wrong we were! Four date changes later, and we arrived in the gallery to hang the show just 24 hours after the funeral of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. A successful and relatively stress-free day of hanging, an extra day for final tweaks and touches, and we were ready for our big launch. Hosted by Club Vivanova, over 120 guests attended, and the launch was a roaring success.

Art Exhibition Private view special guests Pandemonia
Preview night: with guests including walking work of art Pandemonia. Photos by Nicholas Harvey.

Throughout the show we had so many positive comments about brightening people’s day, month and year. Visitors raved about the colour and positivity oozing from the canvases – exactly what was needed after a period of mourning, and amidst an economic downturn. Sales went to British and American clients; existing collectors, walk-ins, and people who had seen the extensive press coverage.

The coverage began with a full page in the Royal Academy Magazine - the first time I've been featured, and it drummed up a lot of interest. This was quickly followed by Art Rabbit, Artlyst, Fad Magazine, Gallery Guide, Wide Walls, UK Daily News, London News and Art Plugged, amongst others, and included a comprehensive interview with Lee Sharrock in Art Plugged, which you can read in an earlier blog post here.

I wanted to thank Katharine Nichols and Varvara Roza for everything they did in organising and running the show. What a privilege it is to have the support of two such strong and beautiful women in my life, and I can't wait for the next chapter. It was certainly worth the wait!

I'll leave you with my favourite piece of all... a fabulous writeup of the exhibition in The Steeple Times!

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