Spring 1883 Tolarno

Spring 1883 gallery lineup 2018

And the participating galleries for this year’s hotel art fair are…

Words: Helen McKenzie

SPRING1883 is not your regular art fair. Rather than hiring a venue and setting up booths for galleries to hire, galleries instead exhibit their artists’ work in hotel suites. The Windsor Hotel on Melbourne’s Spring Street, a grand hotel built in 1883, will host the Melbourne iteration again this year. (It’s also the inspiration for the fair’s name.)

25 Galleries from Australia and New Zealand plus Dutton Gallery from New York have booked rooms for the fair. It will be SPRING’s fifth incarnation and coincides with the Melbourne Art Fair.

Geoff Newton, director of Melbourne’s Neon Parc and one of the founders of the fair, explains why the concept works well. “When people come into the rooms, they immediately feel at home. Instead of saying ‘Oh, I wonder what that looks like above a bed?’, it is already above a bed. It is a simpler proposition.”

It is an intimate approach to looking at and buying art. This writer bought a still life by Emily Hartley-Skudder at the 2016 fair from Wellington’s {Suite} Gallery. Hartley-Skudder had the chance to see inside a Windsor Hotel room prior to the fair and, noting the marble tiles in the bathrooms, she painted them into the background of some of her pieces. While most exhibiting artists do not go to such lengths to adapt their work to the hotel surroundings, it is interesting to see works installed outside the traditional gallery space.

Image: Installation view of Tolarno Galleries, SPRING1883, Melbourne. Courtesy: the artist and Tolarno galleries, Melbourne.

Spring 1883 participating galleries 2018:

ALASKA Projects – Sydney
Arts Project Australia – Melbourne
Blockprojects – Melbourne
Bowerbank Ninow – Auckland
CAVES – Melbourne
Daine Singer – Melbourne
Dutton – New York
Fort Delta – Melbourne
Galerie pompom – Sydney
Jan Murphy Gallery – Brisbane
LON Gallery – Melbourne
MARS Gallery – Melbourne
Murray White Room – Melbourne
Negative Press – Melbourne
Neon Parc – Melbourne
Sarah Scout Presents – Melbourne
STATION – Melbourne
{Suite} – Wellington
Sutton Gallery – Melbourne


Melbourne gallery announces new collecting initiative

Melbourne's MARS Gallery to host a night geared at educating and inspiring young art collectors.

Biennale of Sydney announces 2022 iteration

The Biennale of Sydney 2022 reveals the title of its 23rd iteration along with the first 59 participants.

Angela Tiatia awarded Ian Potter Moving Image Commission

Angela Tiatia awarded Ian Potter Moving Image Commission.

NIAF returns to Sydney in July 2021

The National Indigenous Art Fair returns to The Rocks in early July, marking the beginning of NAIDOC Week 2021.