London’s Showroom gallery was a pioneer of the East End a quarter century ago, now its moved to another blighted location as the beachhead of another gentrification project, according to the Guardian:
Originally launched more than 25 years ago in the beleaguered East End, the Showroom established itself as a forward-thinking , even trailblazing venue. It staged the first UK solo exhibitions for many aspiring artists who are now major figures – among them Sam Taylor-Wood, Mona Hatoum, Subodh Gupta and Jim Lambie .
Just as London has changed, the British art world has, of course, altered enormously. While the YBAs stole some of New York’s lustre in the 1990s, the creation of Tate Modern, an influx of international mega-galleries such as Hauser & Wirth, and Frieze have transformed the capital into a major global art hub. Even in traditionally more conservative commercial galleries, programmes are diverse and anything goes in a city that feels flooded with art.
Today, the Showroom’s former stomping ground, Bethnal Green, has been transformed into a rather plush, art nexus – not only studded with a number of commercial galleries and project spaces but other attendant markers of regeneration from posh coffee shops and fashion-conscious hangouts. […]
Attracting cultural capital is certainly one answer when it comes to the potential wider impact. It was Lisson director Nicholas Logsdail who originally suggested the new venue last year, something one Showroom patron, the architect Terry Farrell, pushed for as part of a regeneration scheme he’d worked on in the area. Already there are signs of heads turning: the Serpentine Gallery has recently established a two-year art commissions project for nearby Edgware Road, and a well-heeled art crowd spilled from the Showroom into the street during the opening.
The Showroom Gallery Goes On (Guardian)