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A chat with Jenny Todd, Director at Two Rooms

Sunday, April 1, 2012

“Working with artists and being involved in their practice is fantastic. You are touched by their creativity and wonderful ideas,” says Jenny Todd, the Director of Two Rooms, located in a converted warehouse in Arch Hill, central Auckland.

Jenny saw first hand the impact of patronage and attracting important collectors from her years running the Todd Gallery in Portobello Road in London where clients included Charles Saatchi.

“A gallery is not a drop off shop for art. If you represent an artist it is all encompassing. You, as the dealer, can help take the artist’s career to another level so your relationship becomes very close indeed,” she says.

Two Rooms, which opened in 2007, has two exhibition spaces and Jenny and her small gallery team look for artists that have “something new to say”.

“I show what I consider to be innovative, creative, surprising and of the moment,” she says. “We always have two artists showing with generally some thread that catches the audience’s fantasy and says something. I like the dialogue.”

“I prefer not to talk about work in terms of investment – although that is part of my role,” Jenny says. “Our aim is to sell visitors an experience, a new way of looking at things and awake them to that pleasure.”

Two Rooms presents a programme of residencies and projects by leading international and New Zealand contemporary artists.

“I think it is so important to create a new dynamic and take us out of ourselves, “Jenny says. “The residency programme is an important focus for us where we support ambitious new projects and facilitate the exchange of ideas between New Zealand and international artists.”

A converted warehouse near the gallery is available as a studio for invited international artists to stay for a period of up to three months. Visiting artists thus far have been Bridget Smith (UK), Runa Islam (UK), Kevin Appel (LA) Isaac Julien (UK) Basil Beattie (UK) Joachim Bandau (GER) David Thomas (AUS) Brad Lochore (UK) Cornelia Parker (UK) and Sarah Lucas (UK).

For more information about Two Rooms go to: tworooms.co.nz

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