Inspiring Art Galleries
Art is a huge part of New London’s culture and can be found throughout the city. From galleries to museums to murals on the side of a building, art is alive and well in New London!
The Catherine Fosnot Art Gallery and Center
As a premier contemporary art gallery in New London, CT, The Catherine Fosnot Art Gallery and Center promotes and showcases the work of a variety of artists. Situated between Boston and New York, we provide the work of new and emerging artists alongside classic, well-established pieces. By providing a space in which to display their latest works, artists appreciate our role in sharing their creative aspirations with a wider audience.
Gallery Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, noon to 6PM, and by appointment (call 917-523-2175)
Once the site of the infamous Hygienic Restaurant, this historic institution is best known for its annual Salon Des Independants Art Show. Since 1979, they’ve hosted the beloved event, which is modeled after the Salon Des Independants held in Paris since 1884, allowing any and all artists to participate, with “no judge, no jury, no fees and no censorship.” The show promises everything from the “sublime to the outrageous” and that’s exactly what you’ll get!
After a grassroots effort to save the building and a community activism movement at its finest, the building underwent a gut reno and reopened in 2000 as the centerpiece of the arts community in New London. It has since played a key role in the revitalization of the downtown area and arts scene, including the development of its outdoor art park and gardens in a once dangerous and rundown corner of the city.
Hygienic Art currently houses a cooperative living space for artists, as well as public gallery space and event space. Since March 2020, they’ve also made all their exhibitions available virtually. Although spurred by the pandemic, this move also aligned with their ultimate mission of making art accessible to all and thus became a permanent move.
Upcoming exhibitions and events include the Hygienic Resident’s Show from May 28- July 3; a seasonal art park installation called the Mandalas Sagradas Art Park on May 28th, and the music of John “Papa” Gros on June 4th.
Lyman Allyn Art Museum
Much more than just an art museum, the Lyman Allyn was established in 1926 as a gift from Harriet Allyn, the youngest daughter of Captain Lyman Allyn, who began in the whaling industry before becoming a prominent local businessman and founder of a school for boys in New London. Harriet instructed in her will that a museum and park be created, but it took until 1932 to make that a reality, when it opened its doors with just 13 works on display, curated by the museum’s first director, Winslow Ames.
Today, the museum’s permanent collection consists of more than 17,000 pieces of art in all mediums, including permanent exhibitions Tiffany in New London, American Perspectives and Playthings of the Past. They also feature changing exhibitions, lectures, art education and enrichment for students, musical events and digital exhibitions that can be viewed online. While their art studio is currently closed due to the pandemic, they’ve transitioned to free take-home art kits for kids to keep the tradition of Saturdays at the Lyman Allyn, including Free First Saturday and Science Saturday alive.
Beyond their indoor gallery and museum space, their beautiful grounds feature a sculpture trail and 9/11 Memorial Garden, as well as 12 acres of lawn and parkland.
Thames River Gallery
This newly reopened gallery on Bank Street was previously known as the Gallery at Firehouse Square. Reopened by the same owner, John Johnson, the gallery has shifted from a maritime theme to now “showcase and promote artists of all genres and their work,” according to a press release. The first exhibit, Whimsies and More, which runs April 15 – June 3, will feature intricate and realistic ship models from two regional model makers — Roger Marshall of Jamestown, RI and Tod Johnstone of Stonington, CT.