A classical marble torso for sale at Ariadne Galleries, next to a paintstick drawing by contemporary artist Richard Serra.

Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

In its first exhibition combining ancient and contemporary art, Ariadne Galleries in Mayfair gives a masterclass in how to do it successfully.

A selling exhibition, Texture, on view until July 27 brings together a small selection of objects from the ancient world with a private collection of original paintstick drawings by the American artist Richard Serra (b.1938). As the show’s name suggests, texture is the focus of every piece.

“Each time we look at an ancient work of art, our imagination is stirred by its form, its proportions, its volume, its texture. Surface texture acquired over centuries is just one of the many compelling aspects of ancient art that inspires us,” said Alexander Hamburger of Ariadne Galleries.

Texture is also a central component of Serra’s drawings, from the handmade paper he uses to the dense layering of black paintstick – a molten block of oil, pigment, and wax – which creates his coarse surfaces.