Meet the owners
Specialising in handmade prints, paintings, sculptures and crafts, Cambridge Contemporary Art gallery shows the work of over 100 UK-based artists, with a new exhibition every month. Situated just a stone’s throw from King’s College, the gallery is in the heart of Cambridge City Centre. We spoke to owner of the gallery Nathalie Staples to find out more:
What does being an independent business mean to you?
Being an independent art gallery means we are supporting a whole network of creative people, from the staff who work here to all the artists whose work we show. 2020 has been devastating for many artists with cancelled fairs and exhibitions shows. Buying original, handmade work that’s been created in the UK helps maintain artists’ livelihoods.
What is your favourite independent business in Cambridge (that isn’t your own!)?
It’s difficult to choose just one so here a few favourites: Meadows, a lovely deli in Newnham selling cheeses and other delicious goodies; Hill St Chocolates for the most original chocolates; Cambridge Wine Merchants for the fantastic selection of wine and knowledgeable staff. Finally the cakes made by Claire on the market, just the best cakes in Cambridge!
What makes yours a green or environmentally friendly business?
Art is by its very essence is the opposite of our throwaway, disposable culture. A painting, print or ceramic is designed to last a lifetime and more!
What’s your favourite thing about the city of Cambridge?
The cycling culture, I don’t have a car so cycling gives me the freedom to go anywhere in Cambridge even with small children in tow.
Why is it important for people to support independent business now more than ever?
2020 will have been the hardest year for many independent businesses and a complete struggle to survive. Shopping independent means you keep interesting shops/cafes/ restaurants alive and local jobs going.
If you went to a desert island, what three things would you take?
I wouldn’t voluntarily choose to go a desert island, this year more than ever I miss my friends and their company. I’d take friends, some wine and music!
What advice would you give your younger self?
Stop wasting time dyeing your hair, being grey at 18 is unusual but not the end of the world!
* Photo credit: Zuza Grubecka
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