Who we are and What we do

Patrick Matthiesen is the son of the late Francis Matthiesen, whose Berlin and later London galleries showed both major old masters and the work of impressionist and twentieth century masters. The Berlin and London galleries were instrumental in brokering the celebrated sale of priceless masterpieces from The Hermitage first to Calouste Gulbenkian and later to Andrew Mellon. These paintings formed the keystone to the National Gallery of Art, Washington. Francis Matthiesen’s catalogues have been a source of inspiration for his son, although his premature death led to the closure of the London gallery in 1963 over a decade before Patrick was himself able to join the art-dealing fraternity.

Following Harrow, Oriel College, Oxford, and a brief stint at The Courtauld Institute, a fluent Italian speaker, Patrick worked as a volunteer conservator in the Bargello in Florence following The Flood in November 1966 and was chief co-ordinator for sculpture restoration in the city. He developed a method for removing the fuel oil which had disfigured much of the marble at ground level. The following year he worked in Venice on similar projects in conjunction with Ken Hempel of the Victoria & Albert Museum. After a brief spell with a property development company in 1972 he joined the venerable London gallery, P. & D. Colnaghi, initially in charge of research, soon becoming a director in the Old Master Paintings department, before founding Matthiesen Fine Art Ltd late in 1977 and moving to 6 Mason’s Yard. Using his property development experience he managed a project to develop nos. 7 and 8 Mason’s Yard in 1980 as a purpose built art gallery on behalf of overseas investors, initiating the space with an exhibition of Baroque old masters in 1981.

This Gallery has proved to be a superlative venue for the many large-scale works that the Gallery has shown. The Gallery has specialised in Italian paintings from 1330 to 1800 mounting a wide variety of exhibitions and publishing over 50 catalogues and selling on multiple occasion to an unrivalled list of well over 108 international public institutions. [see ‘Publications‘ on this site and ‘Institutional clients‘ in the menu above]. The Gallery has also sold major works of the Spanish, French and Flemish schools from 1600 to 1900 and initiated the first public exhibition to beheld in the UK of Spanish baroque sculpture.

Patrick intermittently is an advisor to HMRC and attends the export licencing Reviewing Committee as an expert advisor. He is also a yachtsman, enjoys travel, fine food and wines and is known to enjoy gardening by moonlight mainly because of his tardiness in starting in the morning! He has a predilection for classical music and opera, particularly that composed during the baroque period. He also has interests in ecology linked to the education of third-world children from Cambodia and Nepal to Peru, music and the sponsorship of young musicians and medical care which he currently promotes through The Matthiesen Foundation. Details may be found by clicking the logo below…

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The Gallery has made gifts of paintings to the following institutions worldwide: The National Gallery, Washington; The Metropolitan Museum, New York; The National Gallery of Western Art, Tokyo; The Shizuoka Prefectural Museum; The Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; The National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; The Ackland Art Gallery, Chapel Hill, NC, USA; it has also supported symposia and music at the National Gallery, London and made financial grants to public institutions.


Laila Gaber grew up in Milan, Italy. She studied arts management at IULM University in Milan and completed a Masters Degree in art criticism and curation at Central St Martins in London.

She has extensive experience in gallery management, all gained in various positions within the UK and Italy. She speaks Italian, English and Spanish fluently and she describes herself as a positive thinker who takes great interest in art history, books, exhibitions, cats, theatre and music.

Her interest in different cultures, social events and fine arts made her fall in love with London, where she has been based since 2012. As soon as she visited London for the first time she knew it would become her home, even though she is profoundly grateful to the city of Milan, its alleys, theatres and magnificent historical buildings, which hugely contributed to give her solid foundations to her life in London.