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Arts & Culture

French Quarter Art Galleries: A Royal Street Walking Tour

From classical to contemporary, discover art in the New Orleans French Quarter along Royal Street with this walking tour of the top galleries.

Royal Street
Royal Street in New Orleans is the ideal spot for a romantic stroll. (Photo: Zack Smith)

Royal Street in the French Quarter is often associated with fine antiques and exquisite chandeliers, but it is also home to a significant number of art galleries. It’s safe to say Royal Street offers one of the greatest concentrations of galleries in the South, and the French Quarter has become a serious destination for both international collectors and casual art enthusiasts.

Royal Street (Photo: Paul Broussard)

The blocks closer to Canal Street tend to favor upscale, more established galleries, some of which have been in business for decades. Generally, these galleries cater to the very serious collector or those looking for museum-like experiences. However, in recent years several newer, more approachable spaces have opened in the 800 and 900 blocks of Royal Street. Visitors and locals alike are seeking to purchase art to remember and relive their time in New Orleans. With a wide variety of styles and price points, Royal Street has a piece for everyone.

A word of advice: the best way to experience and learn about the galleries on Royal Street is by strolling on foot and letting your tastes dictate your stops. There are many spaces worth seeing that aren’t mentioned below, but here’s a short list of visually striking galleries, ranging from fine to folk art. They are listed in order of street address, starting from the blocks closer to Canal and moving toward Esplanade.

Royal Street Art Galleries in New Orleans

Windsor Fine Art
221 Royal St.
Stepping into Windsor Fine Art’s serene space is like a trip to a petite European museum. Visitors can see minor works by Dali and Miro, as well as sketches by Rembrandt. Windsor also showcases sculpture and more contemporary landscapes, including photorealism pop art paintings of iconic local New Orleans spots.

Angela King Gallery
241 Royal St.
With its white walls, high ceilings, and tall windows, the Angela King Gallery could be a home in Manhattan. It’s a chic, inviting corner space that encourages visitors to peruse its eclectic collection of paintings, sculpture, and colorful glass pieces.

A diverse mix of works can be found at the Angela King Gallery (Photo: Allison Aslup)

Sutton Gallery
519 Royal St.
Sutton Gallery offers a colorful and eclectic collection that includes European styles, impressionism, contemporary, and local artists such as a current collection featuring bold images from the Mardi Gras krewe of Zulu. The gallery recently celebrated its one hundredth anniversary.

536 Royal St.
Packed into Kako’s 12-foot-wide space is an affordable collection that includes traditional art but favors fun, folky, locally-made pieces and prints, many of which can be packed into a suitcase. Be sure to make your way all the way to the back and see the colorful pieces displayed in the courtyard.

Galerie Rue Royale
541 Royal St.
Sleek, spare, and dark. Galerie Rue Royale specializes in contemporary French and French-inspired art for the serious collector.

The back courtyard at Kako (Photo: Allison Aslup)

Funeral Gallery
811 Royal St.
Funeral Gallery is dedicated to the surreal and macabre side of New Orleans. Opened by local artists Vinsantos and Mister Gregory, this gallery is the perfect place to browse before your Ghost Tour.

Gallery Orange
819 Royal St.
This bright, bohemian gallery hosts plenty of events and openings to celebrate its artists and their works. Gallery Orange’s mission is to offer unique, distinctive artwork at fair market prices, and it features the work of both established artists and those whose art is more recently known.

Tanner Gallery and Studio
830 Royal St.
Known for his paintings of trees, Tanner’s mission is to bring nature back into our homes and lives. He says, “…It is my hope that my paintings will give the viewer a small sense of that tranquility nature provides us and remind people how vital trees are to our existence.”

Captivating fabric work at the Antieau Gallery (Photo: Allison Aslup)

Frank Relle Gallery
910 Royal St.
Frank Relle is a New Orleans photographer who recently joined the lower Royal Street art scene with his gallery located in a historic building that was once home to the Princess of Monaco. Relle’s long-exposure photographs of Louisiana homes and landscapes are set against antique décor in this unique space.

Red Truck Gallery
940 Royal St.
Red Truck Gallery is a funky, inviting space specializing in Outsider Art, Americana, Contemporary Folk Art, Pop Surrealism, and Low Brow – adding a pop of color to the corner of Royal and St. Philip Streets. Pro tip: If you like both art and pizza, check out Red Truck clubhouse on Rampart Street which also features art and serves pizza until 3 am.

Antieau Gallery
927 Royal St.
What began as a pop up art display at Jazz Fest is now housed in its own gallery for self-taught “visionary outsider” Chris Roberts-Antieau. A white cottage-like space showcases Antieau’s compelling fabric tableaux and assemblage pieces. Colorful, unique, folk-inspired and often times humorous work invites a visceral reaction and ultimately, reflection.

933 Royal St.
Harouni’s decidedly contemporary gallery features his own work. The paintings here at first appear fairly homogeneous and favor what appears to be melting male faces and figures. However, Harouni’s complex layering and use of texture invite closer inspection, techniques meant to echo the accretion of time and experience. Likewise, Harouini’s use of facial expression defies a single feeling and suggests the breadth of human emotion.

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