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ING Discerning Eye Exhibition - The Mall Galleries

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

THE ING Discerning Eye exhibition is on display at the Mall Galleries until November 23, 2008.

Each year the exhibition contains an imaginative selection of contemporary artists, setting established names alongside new talent and connecting new artists with new audiences.

This exhibition of small, affordable art stays fresh by renewing its six selectors every year, each of whom is chosen for his or her breadth of knowledge of the arts world. Two critics, two artists, and two collectors are given the opportunity to individually curate their own space within the Mall Galleries.

The 2008 selectors are collectors Bob Benton and Brenda Fenton; artists Fred Cuming RA and Anita Klein; and critics Frances Carey and Robin Morgan. Each selector curates one section of the exhibition, drawing from works submitted by the public, and the works of artists they have personally invited to exhibit. All six sections have distinct personalities.

The ING Discerning Eye is an art buyer’s dream. The 20-inch size limit ensures all art remains in the domestic, highly affordable scale. The hard work has already been done for the buyer as the selectors consider over 2,000 works of art from open submissions.

Speaking about choices, Frances Carey said: “My choice of artists is governed by the desire to set up a new set of ‘conversations’ between artists of very different backgrounds and styles. All have originality, integrity of vision, dedication of purpose and a way of ‘seeing’ the world, which enlightens me constantly”.

As well as selecting from open submissions, the selectors also invite artists they know to take part. As Fred Cuming RA explained: “Artistic styles apart, they all share in my opinion a quality we describe as the ‘Discerning Eye’, and they show us a fascinating and lively cross section of artistic creativity”.

The charm of The ING Discerning Eye exhibition lies in the unpredictability and variety of the selectors’ choice of works, providing the opportunity for unknown and extremely well established artists working in different mediums and styles to show alongside each other.

Admission: Free.

Times: Daily from 10am to 5pm.

Mall Galleries, The Mall, London, SW1Y 5BD