Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Art Exhibitions in London over Festive Season

These are some of the Art Exhibitions which can be seen in London over the Festive Season.  Each is listed against its host museum or gallery with a short summary  Click the link in the title of the exhibition to find out more details.

London is the top capital in the world for the number of top ranking art galleries and museums.  Below you can see some of the reasons why.

The Lady with the Ermine (1496) by Leonardo da Vinci

National Gallery

Ranks #5 in the Top 10 Art Galleries and Museums in the World. You can see over 2,300 masterpieces for FREE.
  • Leonardo da Vinci: Painter at the Court of Milan 9 November 2011 – 5 February 2012 (Sainsbury Wing and Sunley Room)
    ‘Leonardo da Vinci: Painter at the Court of Milan’ is the most complete display of Leonardo’s rare surviving paintings ever held. This unprecedented exhibition – the first of its kind anywhere in the world – brings together sensational international loans never before seen in the UK. (see 
    MAKING A MARK: The Da Vinci Queue 
    09 Nov 2011 and issues which arise regarding getting hold of a ticket. I'd expect queues for the daily tickts to be very long during the festive period given the fact that all pre-booked tickets are sold out)
National Portrait Gallery

Ranks as #18 Art Gallery in the World in terms of visitor numbers - the National Portrait Gallery is completely dedicated to portraiture and holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world.

Tate Modern

Based in an ex Power Station next to the Thames, this is the single most popular dedicated Art Gallery in the UK with over 5 million visitors in 2010.  It focuses on international contemporary and modern art post 1900.
  • Gerhard Richter: Panorama 6 October 2011 – 8 January 2012
    This is the first major retrospective of the work of Gerhard Richter (b. 1932) in London for over twenty years. The exhibition is a chronological display grouping works into important phases of Richter's career.
  • The Unilever Series: Tacita Dean 11 October 2011 – 9 April 2012
    Tacita Dean undertakes the twelfth commission in The Unilever Series for the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern. 
Tate Britain

Tate Britain is the 'senior partner' in the Tate London axis.  It's older and is the home of the Turner Collection. The museum focuses on British artists - past and present - and art by artists who lived in Britain for a long time.
  • John Martin - 21 September 2011 - 15 January 2012
    John Martin (1789–1854) was a key figure in the nineteenth-century art world, renowned for his dramatic scenes of apocalyptic destruction and biblical disaster. This major exhibition will be the first show dedicated to his paintings for over 30 years, and the largest display of his works seen in public since his death. The show will also examine how Martin's populism fits into the story of British art, and how his work connects with the culture of today.
British Museum

The British Museum had nearly 6 million visitors in 2010.  It has global importance due to its collection of seven million objects which provide a record of the art and artefacts of different human cultures across the world.
Grayson Perry, Map of Truths and Beliefs, (detail), 2011.
Courtesy the Artist and The Paragon Press, London.
Copyright Grayson Perry.
Photo: Alicia Guirao, Factum Arte
  • Manga at the British Museum: drawings by Hoshino Yukinobu Until 8 April 2012 FREE
    An exclusive opportunity to see the original drawings from the manga series Professor Munakata’s British Museum Adventure.
  • Hokusai's Great Wave Until 8 January 2012
    This is a unique opportunity to delve into the story behind this iconic work, learn how Hokusai made ‘The Great Wave’, and discover how the print has become a truly global inspiration
Royal Academy of Arts

The Royal Academy is home to the most prestigious art society in the UK.  Noted more for its blockbuster exhibitions and summer exhibition than visitor numbers on a routine basis.
Pre-booking for David Hockney RA: A Bigger Picture 21 January—9 April 2012 is recommended.

Lindsell Church, Essex. No. 1 by Edward Bawden, R.A. 
1956 Pen and ink with watercolour 
Photo credit: copyright Royal Academy of Arts, London; Photographer: Photo Studios
Saatchi Gallery

The Saatchi Gallery boasts that its three exhibitions in 2010 ranked 2nd, 3rd and 4th in the list of the exhibitions with the most visitors.  It neglects to mention that they were all open for longer than most other exhibitions.
Too few gems from the junk-lovers..... Time and again in this show, we find ourselves looking at works that are assembled from bits and pieces of just about anything whatsoever – cans, concrete, plastic bags. Non-art stuff is the stuff of by the The Independent
Courtauld Gallery

A small gallery near Somerset House with a very impressive collection of art.
  • The Spanish Line: Drawings from Ribera to Picasso 13 October 2011 – 15 January 2012
    This exhibition explores the rich, intriguing and varied territory of Spanish drawings, a field that remains relatively little known. The Courtauld Gallery holds one of the most important collections of Spanish drawings outside Spain
Painting Canada at the Dulwich Picture Gallery
Dulwich Gallery
  • Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven19 October 2011 – 8 January 2012
    In the early twentieth century in Toronto, Canada, the first stirrings of a new movement of painting were being felt. A group of artists started to engage with the awesome Canadian wilderness, a landscape previously considered too wild and untamed to inspire ‘true’ art. Tom Thomson paved the way for this artistic collective, the Group of Seven, and their works have become revered in Canada. This exhibition reintroduces their stunning impressions of the Canadian landscape to the British public for the first time since the 1920s

Click the link to NOMINATE Art Blogs for The 2011 Making A Mark Awards

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