LONDON—Agnew’s, Britain’s oldest family-owned art dealership, plans to open a new gallery in London in September. Best known as dealers in Old Masters and traditional British pictures, Agnew’s sold its historic premises in Old Bond Street to Italian fashion house Etro in 2008 for an estimated £24 million ($43million).
The new building is a three-story town house a block away in Albemarle Street. While continuing its traditional business, earlier this year, Agnew’s signaled its intention to build up its program in modern and contemporary art when Tom Lighton, a former director of Waddington Galleries, was appointed chief executive. The new gallery’s main ground-floor space will be devoted to modern and contemporary art.
Agnew’s latest appointment as a director is Georgina Pemberton, a specialist in Australian art and modern British art who formerly worked for Sotheby’s Australia. Pemberton will help the company focus on the emerging markets in the Pacific and Middle East, says chairman Julian Agnew. For the inaugural show in the new space, the gallery is showing the work of Sidney Nolan. Earlier this year Nolan’s First Class Marksman, 1946, a painting of Australian outlaw and folk hero Ned Kelly, sold for A$5.4million ($4.9million), a record for any Australian painting (ANL, 4/6/10).