Maeve Doyle is an art historian, buyer and consultant. She lives and works in Mayfair, London, where she is known for her work with London’s Bankrobber Gallery together with Robin Barton, who is undoubtedly the world’s most famous dealer in Banksy artwork. Doyle has a wild appreciation for old Hollywood glamour, and a love for the idea of old Los Angeles. She’s a woman with a seemingly bottomless well of stories and insights, which she shares regularly with art patrons on walking tours that start and end at Brown’s Hotel (if you’re lucky enough to get a spot on one). Doyle is always immaculately attired in black, with her bold Black Eyewear Blossom frames (named after jazz pianist Blossom Dearie) framing her bright-eyed, elfin face. Be sure to catch her melodious Canadian accent and delightful Irish humour on her regular guest spot talking all things visual on BBC’s ‘the Jo Good Show ‘.
We spoke to Doyle about the world of art, personal style, and the values that drive her…
How did you come to make Mayfair, London home?
A Fairy Godmother said I had three wishes, I used one wish for our apartment in Mayfair – it was an idea inspired by by ‘My Fair Lady’, a rags to riches story of an ingenue with personality and charm crossed with ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ (a near neighbour).
What aspects of your relationship with the art world do you find personally fulfilling?
The theatre of the art world is very fulfilling, to find the right piece for a passionate collector along with its back story is an incredible feeling.
Artists/art to watch?
Tomo Campbell, Hugo Wilson, Dan Baldwin, Lily Ashley, but I would also watch a couple of new gallery’s – for instance I’d watch Abby Hignell at Hignell gallery, or the boys and Cordelia at Maddox Gallery. I’d look at what Marie Locke is showing at BLACKS (a members club on Dean Street), and I’d go to all of the new collaborations between art and shopping. Did you see Frank Cohen’s collection at Fortnum and Mason last autumn? Or Russell Young and Dale Chihuly at Harrods? These museum quality shows in luxury shopping spaces are calling into question the relationship between beauty, shock, money, status, celebrity and what drives the market. Such interesting times.
What are some of your favourite haunts in London?
Blacks, the cinema at 76 dean street, Tate Britian and the river boat ride to Tate Modern, Retro Women on Pembridge Road, Momo on Heddon Street, Frieze Art Fair and Frieze Masters are world class for people watching, Groucho during Frieze week, and Lou Lou’s any month of the year, except August or December. It is the people watching stuff dreams are made of.
What is it about the energy of old Los Angeles that inspires you?
Sheer determination, self belief, and an 18 hour a day work ethic.
You have fabulous style. What are the building blocks of your look?
I rely on coats from PAPER LONDON – Kelly (Townsend) and Philippa (Thackery) showed their first collection at DOYLE DEVERE in Notting Hill, and we have worked together ever since. for me it’s the feeling I get from knowing the girls that keeps me connected to the brand. The same principle applies to Robert Roope and Black Eyewear another building block for my look.
Your eyewear feels so distinctly ‘you’. How did you come to find your frames?
Robert pulled out a small number of frames for me to try at his Goodge street store, he is polite and direct with his opinions – It was Robert who picked Blossom for me, it was his opinion I listened to.
You’ve spoken about your eyewear having a transformative effect when you wear them in certain contexts, can you elaborate?
I think public appearances and having your photograph taken can be traumatic if you aren’t a trained model or actress! The glasses I wear give me a confidence, like a superhero’s costume gives them super powers – like Catwoman’s catsuit or Wonder Woman’s tiara.
In your experience, what should people look for when choosing frames for themselves?
Call 0207 637 2144 and ask for Robert.
No amount of money can buy a bad day back.
MAEVE DOYLE WEARS BLOSSOM IN MATT DARK TORTOISESHELL AND MATT BLACK. AVAILABLE ONLINE OR IN-STORE.