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A gift from us: the online Deia Artists’ GalleryDecember 9, 2022

Chloe Hill, sister of Patrick and Charlie Hill, has been involved in the launch of the Deia Artist’s Gallery website. Seen here talking to David Templeton.

 

Now you can buy Deià art online. We’re delighted to announce the launch of the online art space, the Deia Artists’ Gallery, created to support the local artists of Deia.  

Ever since we opened our doors in Deia, we’ve been grateful for the contribution the Deia artists make to the cultural life of the village and how it’s perceived in the world.

The walls of our bricks and mortar office in the village high street have been lined with work by Deia artists from the very beginning.

This online Deia Artists Gallery is a gift to the artistic community here. Apart from enabling people who love the artists’ work to buy their art online, it acknowledges the role that art continues to play in the life of our community. All the proceeds from sales via the website go directly to the artist.

A history of art

It’s commonly believed that the bohemian aspect of Deia blossomed to give off strange fruit with the arrival of Robert Graves in the village in 1929. 

Graves’s presence is certainly the only reason great artists such as his friend Len Lye spent time in the village. The artists who began to settle here after WWII such as Mati Klarwein were probably also partly attracted by the possibility of spending time with Graves.

By that time, after the publication of The White Goddess, Graves was one of the poetic touchstones for poets, writers and musicians – particularly in America.

But Deia had been attracting artists for many years before Graves’s arrival and the village seems to have been every bit as unconventional. Just to give one example, the book Isla de Calma written about Mallorca by Spanish painter and poet Santiago Rusiñol in 1890 mentions bare breasted women strolling down the street in Deia.  

Apparently, Rusiñol’s nickname for Deia was Little Bethlehem, inspired by witnessing a nativity procession in the village featuring live donkeys coming down from the church. 

Incidentally, I’ve been told that the reason Graves went to Deia in the first place is thanks to a German artist, nicknamed Christ by the Graves family. Graves met Christ in what was then the bohemian quartier of Palma, El Terreno. Christ suggested Graves and his then partner, Laura Riding, visit the village.

Keepers of the flame: Deia Artists’ Gallery

While being highly distinctive in their work, the seven artists currently featured on the site fall very, very loosely into one of two categories.

There are those who mainly paint the village and surrounding landscape. They become obsessed with the quality of light here and with the brilliance of the moon. 

In an article about Deia, Graves wrote, “The Church is said to be built on the site of an Iberian shrine of the Moon-goddess and I am prepared to swear that nowhere in Europe is moonlight so strong as in Deia; one can even match colours by it. And moonlight is notorious for derangement of the wits.”

Then there are those who are drawn to Deia more by its creative spirit, a spirit that might have been nurtured by generations of maverick artists but which could just as easily be something in the air. These are artists who might welcome a little derangement of their wits.

Such artists don’t necessarily take Deia as their subject. Nevertheless, the village inspires their work. 

The seven artists represented at the Deia Artists’ Gallery are very much keepers of the artistic flame in Deia. They constantly inspire us. We look forward to adding more artists to their number in future.

If you’d like to view the art on the walls of our Deia office, please feel free to drop in. We’re opposite La Residencia in the main street.

Patrick

Patrick Hill is co-founder, and co-owner, of Charles Marlow with his brother Charlie. He was the first to come from the UK to Deia to start the company. Today, Patrick continues to help set the strategic direction and splits his time between the UK and Mallorca

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