Fabrica: More than an art gallery

This is not so much a review of a single art exhibit but a call to action for art lovers. It’s a chance to shine the spotlight on the wonderful Fabrica.

Fabrica is a well-established visual arts company that holds a variety of exhibits in a former Regency church. Situated on the corner of Duke Street, Fabrica opened in 1996 and was co-founded by artistic visionary Matthew Miller ,who jokingly referred to it as “the best gallery you’ve never heard of”. To some extent his words still ring true. I’m astonished at the amount of people who walk right past the reconstructed Holy Trinity Church and never know that it houses some of the finest artistic efforts in the city.

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Fabrica has come a long way since it’s humble beginnings and is now supported by the likes of Arts Council England, Time & Place Project, WAIDE and the council.

From installations to photo exhibits, Fabrica and the artists work tirelessly to deliver spectacular displays. I have seen three exhibits and attended an art fair that have all been magnificent and moving in different ways. The most recent was in late November 2014 when artist Simon Faithfull held his REEF exhibit. It was a wonderful notion that involved the sinking of a fishing boat called the Briony Victoria. The 32 ton sunken boat was covered in cameras and recorded the formation of an entirely new reef off the coast of England. It is this kind of innovation that you can find at Fabrica.

My favourite exhibit by far was The Beautiful Horizon, No Olho da Rua. This display of photographs was the result of a long term cooperation between young homeless people living in Belo Horizonte, Brazil and Brazilian artists Julian Germain, Patricia Azevedo & Murilo Godoy. The installation had 16 years of photographs taken by the artists and poverty stricken Brazilians. It was a deeply moving portrayal of the downtrodden lower class and a chance for them to express themselves in a visual medium.

Fabrica is fantastic as a concept and a venue. The high ceilings and ethereal nature of the converted church building adds to the ambience of anything put inside it. It’s a multi-purpose space; large yet intimate and houses some of Brighton’s most prolific artistic concepts and brightest minds.

Check out their upcoming exhibits.


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