Taking the decorative approach – Matthew Hall, Co-Founder, Panter & Hall


Panter & Hall have always considered the decorative value of art, even launching P&H Decorative to help guide clients and offering an Art By Room service for each area of a home, from the dining room to children’s bedrooms. 

Matthew Hall explains how it works. 

“When we redid our website about ten years ago, we tried to think like the modern buyer. We realised that very few people have a dozen works by the same artist on their walls. Most want to live with something that gives them a bit of joy, so they’re more likely to have works by a dozen different artists that sit well in the space dedicated to them.” 

That feeling of joy usually comes from a sense of harmony established between an artwork and its setting and acknowledging this helped Panter & Hall in developing relationships with designers and decorators who came into their gallery and visited their stand at fairs. 

The sort of mid-century Modern and Modern British works they deal in offer an immense range of attractive art at accessible prices for decorators and private buyers to work with, as well as providing the gallery with a healthy supply of images for the global shopfront they have established on Instagram. 

When it comes to the Art By Room concept, Matthew says: “I don’t want to sound trite, but what was true fifty years ago remains true today: you don’t tend to hang nudes in the dining room, and you will always find the perfect space for a still life in the kitchen.” 

As the Panter & Hall website explains, the study is a very personal room that can tend to be a low key and contemplative space. “Perhaps a space for subtler, gentler works – watercolours, drawings or etchings that would be lost visually in the larger public areas,” they advise. 

Developing this sensitivity has led the gallery to discover and source wonderful new art from Scandinavia, particularly Sweden, over the past few years. “We have found some really beautiful things there,” says Matthew, “but, as always happens, everyone else has now beaten a path there too and prices have soared. Works that could be had for under £100 at one point can cost as much as £1,800 now.” 



In marrying the collecting tradition with interior design, Matthew and his partner Tiffany Panter focus on works from the post-Impressionism to modernism. The mid-century modern aesthetic is very much in favour and we are constantly sourcing new twentieth century paintings and prints from across the globe. 

As well as the Cecil Court Gallery off the Charing Cross Road dedicated to Panter & Hall (Decorative), they recently moved along the road from their old Pall Mall premises in London to a bright new space in St James Square. 

Gracing the walls there now is a new exhibition of the work of Luke Martineau, Texture and Light, a master of shimmering scenes using oils. From character studies and still lifes to London street scenes and the vistas of Lake Garda, any one of these would hang well on the walls of the modern home. 

Harriet Bridgman, who has known Martineau for over 40 years and has written the introduction to the exhibition catalogue, says: These paintings have an easy naturalism, and in our ever more fretful era his pictures speak of the good things in life, an appreciation of the beauty in nature and the importance of savouring our engagement with the world around us. Amen to that! 

The exhibition runs until June 7. 


Matthew Hall, www.panterandhall.com