Justin Cook, co-owner of the Living Art Gallery, shares some favourite sites.

Justin Cook discovered his love of art at 22 when in Amsterdam on business. During his World travels he has also been able to develop and expand his love of art.

Justin’s family have been established for over 50 years in The Antique & Fine Art business. When Justin’s brothers invited him to join them in setting up a contemporary art gallery based in Hungerford, Berkshire he seized the opportunity and along with his brothers Stephen and Richard they founded LIVING ART, a modern art gallery dealing in Impressionism, Wood Block Prints, Fluxus and Sculpture. Here, Justin shares some favourite sites.


Salvador Central – For anyone who has not visited Salvador on the East Coast of Brazil this site really gives you the feel of this magical paradise. Salvador is my favourite place in the world to visit and later in life I would like to live there. The site has been created by an American ex pat called Sparrow who used to work in the music business in NY and has decided to make this paradise his new home. This site really breaks down the cultural history and musical legacy that makes up the unique heartbeat of this wonderful place in Bahia. If planning a trip to Brazil this site is essential reading before you go.

Airbnb – This App is probably one of the most liberating site/apps out there. I started using this App about 4 years ago and have travelled all round the world including Brazil, Europe and the States. Not only can you choose which type of place you stay in and the price you pay, but you also end up making good friends with the people that host you. The advantage of this is the local knowledge that your hosts can pass on. The days of paying for overpriced hotel rooms is over… Welcome to Airbnb!

The Art Collector – This site is a clear and concise guide to latest exhibitions and artist interviews. It’s a great way for an artist to get noticed and to promote their work. For a collector it is also a great place to find new art. The site covers both national and International exhibitions both past and present. The sites simple lay out is perfect for navigating. The site also organises art trips both nationally and internationally. They also run an art consultancy service that helps the client source and buy art. There is also a portal that allows for private pier to pier art sales. It is all about functionality and art without the whistles and bells attached!

Alexandre Farto – Vhils is the tag name of Portuguese graffiti/street artist Alexandre Farto. Alexandre came to prominence when his work of a face carved into a wall appeared alongside a picture by street artist Banksy at the Cans Festival in London in 2008. A photograph of him creating the work appeared on the front page of The Times. Since this Vhils has completed many projects round the world and his reputation of creating eye catching pieces of art with breath taking scale has grown.

One of Vhils latest creations was a joint initiative with the ESA (European Space Agency). Vhils created a site specific piece especially conceived for the Observation Cupola of the International Space Station-the only place where astronauts can observe the planet Earth in its entirety. The piece portrays Andreas Mogensen- the first Danish astronaut to make it into space-and was made to fit into the main window of the Cupola module. I would recommend this website as Vhils ambition and scale seems to know no bounds.

Living Art – It would be remiss of me not to suggest my gallery website on my top tips. The site is a guide to the selection of artists you can expect to see at Living Art. There are artist that hail from NY to Tehran and onto Europe. I put regular blogs up featuring art trips and new art that I have found on my travels. It is a basic word press site with the onus being on simple functionality and great art. I am developing the site all the time and adding new content so please feel free to check us out!

Tate – Since a good friend bought me the Tate membership card I have been scanning this website looking for shows to visit. It has been a fantastic resource for finding out the best things to attend within the Tate portfolio of museums.

The two exhibitions that really blew my mind were the Jackson Pollock Blind Spots (1951-53) at the Tate Liverpool and the Nam June Paik show at the Tate Modern. The site also tells you about visiting art experts who give talks about different artist and exhibitions that are coming up. It’s a great way to learn about art without the pressure that sometimes comes with the art world.

It was my Dad’s birthday recently and we took a mid-week road trip to see some art. Dad is a massive fan of TS Lowry and we decided to go to the Lowry in Manchester to see the works and on the way we took in the Pollock Blind Spots show at the Tate Liverpool. We booked an Airbnb place in Manchester that we drove to after the Pollock show in Liverpool to relax in before taking the Lowry show in the next day, it was great to combine Airbnb and Tate together and spend time with my Dad. It’s so easy to plan this kind of trip and the memories last forever so just do it!

'Art Without Borders' Exhibition is open from the 10th-24th December at Living Art Gallery
, 16 Bridge St, Hungerford, RG17 0EG


December 2015