Art Market

The gallerists behind the influential gallery Blain | Southern are splitting up.

Wallace Ludel
Nov 5, 2019 5:58PM, via The Art Newspaper

Graham Southern and Harry Blain. Photo by Nick Harvey/WireImage.

The relationship between Harry Blain and Graham Southern, co-founders of the mega-gallery Blain | Southern, has gone south, and the powerhouse dealers are going their separate ways. The two founded Blain | Southern in London in 2010, adding a Berlin location in 2011, and opening a New York outpost earlier this year in the prime Chelsea space formerly occupied by Cheim & Read.

Blain | Southern will seemingly remain open in some form, as Harry Blain told The Art Newspaper that he would remain director and that the gallery is “going through a period of restructuring but remains fully committed to its artists, program and the three spaces we have in London, Berlin, and New York.”

While the gallery strives to maintain a sense of normalcy, TAN also pointed to two concurrent instances of artists digressing. Sean Scully told the outlet he is “in dispute” with the gallery, and while Blain confirmed the quarrel, he did not offer further details. In a Facebook post last week, artist duo Jake and Dinos Chapman said they “have departed company with Blain | Southern Gallery, and will cease to be represented by them with immediate effect.” As of this writing, Jake and Dinos Chapman remain listed as members of Blain | Southern’s roster, according to the gallery’s website.

Amid the changes also comes the announcement that the gallery will be leaving the 25th Street space it just moved into. It purportedly intends to move somewhere in downtown Manhattan. According to Blain, Marlborough is negotiating a deal that would have them purchasing the 25th Street space currently occupied by his gallery, so Blain | Southern is “now in negotiations on a new space, which we will announce in due course.”

The gallery’s site doesn’t currently list any forthcoming shows beyond December nor participation in any forthcoming art fairs, and Craig Burnett, the director of exhibitions, recently left his post. Blain noted that the gallery “will announce some new artists to the program over the coming weeks.”

Wallace Ludel