October Gallery, in central London, was founded in 1979 and was the first gallery in the UK to present contemporary art from all around the world. Currently in its 33rd year, October Gallery has supported some of the most innovative and exciting artists of our time, exhibiting artists from the Middle East, Oceania, Asia and Africa. The gallery is particularly known for exhibiting contemporary art from Africa and has been instrumental in bringing to international attention many of Africa’s leading artists of today, including El Anatsui, Nnenna Okore, Gérard Quenum, Julien Sinzogan, Owusu-Ankomah, Rachid Koraïchi and Romuald Hazoumè.
The rich diversity of artworks presented is an inspiration both to collectors and enthusiasts. Institutions such as the British Museum, London; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany; Neue Galerie, Kassel, Germany; Setagagya Art Museum, Tokyo and GOMA, Brisbane, have all collected works from October Gallery.
October Gallery presents six to eight exhibitions per year and collaborates with numerous institutions and museums on loans, exhibitions and catalogues. Such collaborations range from organising commissions for exhibitions such as the Victoria and Albert Museum’s Uncomfortable Truths (2007) or the recent loan of Brion Gysin’s magnum-opus, Calligraffiti of Fire, to the New Museum, New York (2010). In 2011, Rachid Koraïchi won the prestigious Jameel Prize at the Victoria and Albert Museum. The gallery maintains close relationships with various Departments of the British Museum.
As a registered charity October Gallery runs a significant educational programme for London schools. Its elegant three-storey Victorian building in Bloomsbury houses a café, theatre and garden-courtyard. The Gallery maintains a cultural hub in central London, hosting talks, performances and seminars for poets, writers, artists and intellectuals.