A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON
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A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON

A CAREFULLY CURATED SELECTION OF ART EXHIBITIONS AND EVENTS THAT SHOULD NOT BE MISSED:

The summer of 2017 is shaping up to be one of London’s best yet, with a plethora of artistic, musical and cultural events taking place across the city in both specially arranged open spaces and museums and art galleries. We’ve selected some of the most important exhibitions that London has to offer from June until September, so have a look below and plan your weeks ahead.

THE UK’S FIRST MAJOR RETROSPECTIVE OF ALBERTO GIACOMETTI FOR 20 YEARS AT TATE MODERN:

Celebrated as a sculptor, painter and draughtsman, Alberto Giacometti’s distinctive elongated figures are some of the most instantly recognisable works of modern art. This exhibition reasserts Giacometti’s place alongside the likes of Matisse, Picasso and Degas as one of the great painter-sculptors of the 20th century.

Through unparalleled access to the extraordinary collection and archive of the Fondation Alberto et Annette Giacometti, Paris, Tate Modern’s ambitious and wide-ranging exhibition brings together over 250 works. It includes rarely seen plasters and drawings which have never been exhibited before, showcasing the full evolution of Giacometti’s career across five decades, from early works such as Head of a Woman [Flora Mayo] from 1926 to iconic bronze sculptures such as Walking Man I  from 1960. Visit the Tate Modern website for exhibition details.

A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON

Alberto Giacometti, L’Homme Qui Marche, 1948

BERNAR VENET – LOOKING FORWARD AT BLAIN SOUTHERN:

Bernar Venet‘s Looking Forward: 1961-1984″ traces the development of the artist’s distinct conceptual mode, focusing on works that were pivotal in defining his entire practice. It will be the French artist’s first solo show in London since the ICA in 1976. He was in his thirties at the time yet had already been the subject of a career retrospective in New York and was widely esteemed for his role in the development of conceptual art.

1961 was a significant turning point for the young artist. While conscripted to military service in France he was preoccupied by the question of how to free his art work from personal expression. He started employing performance, sound and randomised painting in order to avoid the idioms of pictorial art. After noticing tar dripping down the cliffs in an old quarry, he became fascinated by the physical qualities of this material and how it adhered to the surface, beginning two new bodies of work as a result. By dripping industrial paint onto discarded cardboard he created Déchets, whereas in his Goudron works he demonstrated a different application using tar, firstly onto paper and later onto canvas. To find out more about the artist and unprecedented exhibition, visit Blain Southern.

A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON

Image Courtesy: Blain Southern

PICASSO’S MINOTAURS AND MATADORS AT GAGOSIAN LONDON:

Gagosian has partnered with Pablo Picasso‘s grandson, Bernard Ruiz-Picasso, to present “Picasso: Minotaurs and Matadors“, an exquisite exhibition curated by Sir John Richardson. The show examines the intersection of the iconic artist’s bullfighting imagery with his mythological and biographical compositions from the 1930s. This career-long survey includes works dating from 1889 to 1971 and it traces Picasso’s engagement with ancient rituals and narratives of his native Mediterranean.

Though one of history’s most innovative modernists and responsible for reshaping the art world altogether during the 20th century, Picasso was thoroughly grounded in his Spanish heritage traditions. Born in the southern port of Malaga in 1881, he was a lover of the bullfight drama: matadors, picadors, horses, and bulls were all recurring subjects throughout his body of work, from early childhood drawings to some of his final paintings. Find out more about the extraordinary exhibition by visiting Gagosian London.

A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON

Picasso wearing a bull’s head intended for bullfighter’s training, La Californie, Cannes 1959 (Image Courtesy of Edward Quinn / Gagosian)

NAHMAD PROJECTS PRESENTS “ROTHKO CAGE TURRELL”:

Rothko Cage Turrell is the first ever joint presentation of these three cultural icons of Post-War America. The exhibition features a major painting by Mark Rothko, a unique hologram by James Turrell, and the seminal Music for Piano no. 3, a composition by John Cage. These works stimulate a dialogue on the notion of silence as a means to enhance sensory experience. In line with previous exhibitions by Nahmad Projects, this show explores the phenomenology of space, the perception of colour, and the effects of sound.

Mark Rothko is one of the most significant figures of the Abstract Expressionist movement. Rothko sought to engage the mind and the spirit through the stillness of his
paintings. Untitled (Yellow, Orange, Yellow, Light Orange) was executed in 1955. Referring to the sublime, Rothko’s use of colour allows the viewer to experience feelings of joy, gloom, anxiety and peace.

John Cage was a composer known for disrupting modern music’s conventions to emphasise the role of silence. Cage believed that silence was impossible to reach, asserting that
even the pause between musical sounds is an entity, made up of noise in the surrounding space. Music for Piano no. 3 was composed in 1952, the same year as his radical 4’33, a three-movement composition where the performer does not play their instrument during the entire duration of the piece.

James Turrell has spent a lifetime working directly with light and space to explore the limits of human perception. Holograms are traditionally used to make an illusion, where light becomes the means through which a three-dimensional object is depicted. Turrell instead uses holography to examine the phenomenon of the light itself, capturing its fleeting qualities to transform it into a visible and tangible object. Find out more about the exhibition by visiting Nahmad Projects.

A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON

James Turrell work at the Shops of Crystals, Las Vegas

CARTIER IN MOTION AT LONDON’S DESIGN MUSEUM:

Curated by Lord Norman Foster, the Cartier in Motion exhibition explores the creativity of Cartier and design, including over 170 exhibits alongside rare insights into the research and work of the designers at Cartier, through extracts from material found in the Cartier Archives. Whilst telling the story of Cartier watchmaking and the invention of the modern wristwatch, Cartier in Motion explores the change in society at the turn of the 20th century.

Amidst upheavals in art, architecture, travel and lifestyles, the traces of a new world could be seen, and this is illustrated through each of the main themes of the exhibition which include the evolution of Paris and its influence on Cartier shapes; Louis Cartier‘s connections with Alberto Santos-Dumont and other pioneers of that age; the birth of the modern wristwatch; the everyday accessories designed to cater to a glamorous inter-war lifestyle and the evolution of Cartier watch designs and Cartier craftsmanship. Find out more by visiting the Design Museum.

A SUMMER OF ART IN LONDON

Image Credit: Nigel Young-Foster + Partners

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