While living in London in 2016, I found this property online. It used to be a photographic studio and lab, where the film from my first ever art exhibition was developed. I felt it was a sign. Initially, we decided to buy it as an investment but then I started fantasising about setting up a gallery. So we came back to Dublin and started to restore the building. We have some grand plans for the property which is 2,000 sq ft, and still a work in progress. So far, we have added heating and lighting, a new staircase, kitchen and bathroom. The gallery and studio are on the ground floor, with a small kitchen and a bathroom. My studio is in the main room of the coach house, which has high ceilings. Recently, I’ve been working on large-scale seascapes with a palette knife on the verge of abstract, which is a new departure for me.
What I like most about the property is that there are no interior doors between the rooms, which creates a nice flow. The biggest challenge is that there is not much natural light. While decorating, instead of trying to make the place appear brighter by painting walls, floors and ceilings white, we chose darker colours to create a mood. We think this helps display the paintings, the viewer focusing on the artwork rather than the walls.
We like to upcycle as much as possible. Most of our furniture comes from vintage shops and auction rooms in London, some from Brighton. We are both fans of the Scandinavian aesthetic, and admire mid-century and Art Deco pieces. When we bought the property, it was a bare, austere building, a storeroom. Combining our talents, I would like to think we’ve created a fantastic exhibition space, a good addition to Dublin’s art scene.