Bloom Gallery opens in Altrincham's Goose Green
PUBLISHED: 14:25 05 July 2011 | UPDATED: 12:03 28 February 2013
Cheshire's new hotspot for beautiful art and beautiful people!
Adam Hudson caught up with local entrepreneur, art lover, and Bloom Gallery Director, Chris Tunnicliffe, to find out more about the "controversial art" displayed at the Goose Green gallery and also find out a bit more about the owner...
What schools did you attend and what kind of student were you?
I went to Hale Prep Manchester Grammar but I wasnt vastly interested in education at that point so I decided to start businesses instead, and launched my design agency called Bloom Creative. The Bloom Gallery was a lifestyle choice, Im into art, I collect art and this was an opportunity to do something different.
What is your personal art "history"?
Well, only through working with businesses was I able to fulfil this venture financially. I mean Ive travelled all over Europe and the USA viewing galleries. What weve tried to do here at Bloom is create a proper gallery space because there are plenty of art shops but there arent any art galleries outside of the big cities! However, as much as I love art, I wouldnt ever think of creating it myself.
What encouraged you to start your own gallery?
It gives me the opportunity to work with something that I really enjoy. I mean, working everyday on something you love is great. You get to surround yourself with beautiful things everyday and be able to share that with others.
What does the Bloom Gallery bring to the art world and, more importantly, Altrincham?
To the art world, it brings a chance for artists to showcase their work in a true gallery environment, outside of London. In terms of what it brings to Altrincham, well, its a town that has been struggling for a long time, even since I was young as I have lived here all my life.
So we wanted to come here as we know Altrinchams time will come, its got be back on the up soon. There are a lot of empty units here as people from the surrounding areas, like Hale and Bowden, dont come up here anymore and we want to give them a reason to come to Altrincham.
Goose Green, in particular, is fantastic, a really lovely spot and coming here gives Goose Green a new lease of life as well. We just hope that our example will encourage other great businesses to follow. I feel art facilities can really add something new to towns and hopefully boost Altrinchams status.
Where do you hope to see the Bloom Gallery in 10 years time?
We hope to continue what weve started and showcase art from artists across the world and bring them to North Cheshire. We want to be even more courageous in our artistic choices and give new artists the chance to display their work and we want to bring established artists from all over Europe to this part of England.
Youre the only gallery outside London to stock Israeli artist, David Gersteins work; did you approach him about it?
We approached him; we really loved his work through seeing his exhibitions. We have a community around here that appreciates his work and its a rare chance to see it outside of London and New York. People have bought his work across the world but now you can see it here at Bloom too. His work, as an established artist, means most people dont get the opportunity to see it, or at least certainly not the opportunity to see it conveniently. Bloom changes this and gives people that convenience.
What does the future look like for Chris Tunnicliffe?
Who knows? I have no idea myself, Im just going to take one day at a time and see what happens.
What draws you to Cheshire?
Its just one of those things, its home you know? It just has a nice vibe about it, what with the al fresco culture thats developing. In terms of Altrincham, its got a lot to offer what with great bars and such. I mean, the Classroom, a bar on the high street, is an excellent place to go.
Would you say youre man who is big on fashion?
No (laughs). Well, I pay attention and do my best but I dont really follow anything in-particular. I tend to incorporate a combination of high street and high end depending on what Im buying, so, everyday stuff from places like H & M, River Island and Selfridges. Im definitely an impulsive shopper, like I love regular trips to the Trafford Centre.
Who is the one person you would like to meet dead or alive?
Id say Harvey Milk; he started a revolution and changed the way people live. You can say the same for people like Martin Luther King. The people who really made change for the better, who stepped out, put their heads above the parapet at different times of history and really made a difference.
What is your favourite film and why?
Another tough one but Id say Schindlers List. I really like a true story and although it isnt exactly a happy film, it has a really inspiring ending.
If you could only eat one dish for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Oooooh, it has got to be a beautiful rare fillet steak with chips.
Do you regret anything from the past?
Im a strong believer in not regretting the past; I dont really want to shut the door on it. Mistakes have been made but I feel I am where I am today because of those and they can only add to your experiences.
Say you were banned from everywhere in the world apart from one place, where would you choose?
Switzerland. It has absolutely lovely scenery in the summer, I dont care about the winter and the snow and skiing, just give me the scenery in summer.
Convince me why people should visit the Bloom Gallery
Its the only space of its kind in this area. I mean you have to travel far and wide to see the sort of art that we carry here. It gives people the opportunity to see work that may be a bit controversial, that may be a bit difficult and challenging but thats the nature of art. Its a wonderful space where you can come and enjoy things that other places may not go near.