Wellness Collective: Mila Askarova
We spoke to the Gazelli Art House founder to find out about her London, what inspires her and what’s next for Gazelli Art House.
Mila credits her mother Dr Hamzayeva (Dr Z) as inspiring her love of the arts from an early age. Mila started her career at Sotheby’s before moving on to work for one of London’s top galleries. She set up Gazelli Art House, a contemporary art gallery on Dover Street in Mayfair, in 2012 after a series of successful pop-up exhibitions.
A recent visit to Charlotte Colbert’s London studio left Mila feeling inspired. Charlotte is an English / French artist and filmmaker whose work has been described as ‘an exploration of the human mind’ by Vogue, and as ‘fascinating, hypnotic and intimate’ by AnOther Magazine. Charlotte is best known for her surrealist ‘breathing sculptures’, which have included a 3-metre-long screen sculpture featuring actress and model Lily Cole breastfeeding. Gazelli Art House has exhibited Colbert’s work since the gallery first opened in 2012 and has hosted two of Colbert’s solo shows. Mila described Colbert’s 2016 show Ordinary Madness: ‘A sense of solitude and disintegration emanate from the images but also humour and absurdity. Charlotte Colbert’s tongue-in-cheek approach re-poses in a playful way the eternal question of the limitations of language.’ Gazelli Art House also supported Colbert’s short film The Silent Man, loosely based on 20th-century painter Oskar Kokoschka creating a doll as part of the grieving process for his great love, Alma Mahler. Mila is excited to discover what will be the next chapter in Colbert’s work.
Three times a year, Gazelli Art House holds an open call to give new graduates the opportunity to display their work in the gallery’s windows. An external committee judges the applications and decides who will exhibit. The new display will be installed at the end of April. Mila has been pioneering in her approach to supporting digital art and in 2015, to critical acclaim, she set up the Digital Art House www.gazell.io, an online residency for artists working in the realms of digital and virtual reality. Mila is excited to continue to explore the joining of physical and digital art.
Mila's London Favourites
To eat: Mayfair Garden, a hidden gem just off Oxford Street that does the most wonderful dim sum.
For a quiet catch up with friends: Little House, a members’ club tucked away in the heart of Mayfair.
For a walk: through the greenery of Holland Park.
To shop: I like the small boutiques on Ledbury Road in Notting Hill Gate.
To feel creatively inspired: I head to Shoreditch in East London, which is always changing and evolving.
To learn: I love so many of London’s museums.
To escape: Soho Farmhouse, a members’ club in the Oxfordshire countryside.
To take guests visiting the city: Gazelli House, of course!
Mila's Beauty Tips
I go for regular facials at Gazelli House to keep my skin healthy. My favourite product is the Hydra-Radiance Face Mist, which I keep close by to refresh my skin throughout the day.
Everything happens for a reason, so always be grateful for what you have.