We joke about the number of women’s clothing stores in downtown Westport.
But there are nearly as many art galleries — places to buy paintings, sculpture and more — as there are spots for skirts, shoes and Spandex.
Six galleries hug both banks of the river. Each has its own style. Taken together, they reinforce Westport’s reputation as an arts town.
Amy Simon Fine Art recently moved from Southport to 123 Post Road East. A dealer with over 30 years’ experience at places like the Guggenheim and Metropolitan Museum of Art (and with the estate of Jackson Pollock), Amy showcases work by established and emerging artists, Chinese contemporary art, and limited edition prints by the likes of Warhol, Rauschenberg and Lichtenstein.
Around the corner on Church lane is Sorelle Gallery, a recent arrival from New Canaan. The women-owned and managed business (the name means “sisters” in Italian) — which also has a robust online presence — includes plenty of reasonably priced work. (NOTE: Today at 1 p.m., Sorelle is hosting a reception — with Prosecco. All are welcome.)
Perhaps Westport’s best known — and most visible — gallery is Pop’TArt, at the head of Main Street by the Post Road. Originally a pop-up, it focuses on contemporary American art that pushes visitors to think about current headlines. All artists live in or have ties to Fairfield County. Pop’TArt hosted the hugely successful Aware breast cancer campaign, and currently exhibits statues by Bolek.
Three galleries lie just across the Saugatuck River. Bankside Contemporary by historic National Hall calls itself more than just a gallery. It’s a “communal gathering space,” offering a relaxed, casual atmosphere along with art.
Around the corner on Wilton Road is Quidley and Company Fine Art. Open by appointment now, with a focus on only one or two artists at a time, it features landscapes, portraits and figurative works, marine and still lifes. Owner Chris Quidley owns another gallery in Nantucket.
Across the street, Westport River Gallery at the corner of the Post Road and Riverside opened in 2004. Owners Ken and Pat Warren carry international fine art, and work with collectors, corporate clients and decorators from across the nation.
That’s not all the art in the area, either. The Artists Collective of Westport has organized shows in the 47 Main Street storefront. The Downtown Merchants plan special events soon.
Keep your eye on this space. And on all those galleries too.
(Hat tip: Rebecca Mace)