News and Events
Private View held by Richard Andrews
Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album presents both a personal visual diary and a document of America's dynamic social and cultural life in the 1960s. The exhibition features over 400 original photographs taken by Dennis Hopper, the American actor, film director and artist between 1961 and 1967. The photographs were personally selected and edited by Hopper for his first major exhibition at the Fort Worth Art Center in Texas in 1970, and the vintage prints were only rediscovered after his death in 2010. Although not formally trained as an artist, Hopper created paintings and assemblages throughout his career and during the 1960s, when he found himself blacklisted in Hollywood, photography became his main creative outlet. For 6 years he worked obsessively, taking an estimated 18,000 photographs, which moved between humour and pathos, the playful and the intimate, the glamorous and the everyday. Hopper took iconic portraits of Paul Newman, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Jane Fonda and many other actors, artists, poets and musicians of his day. He photographed his family and friends and captured countercultural movements that ranged from Free Speech to Hells Angels and Hippie gatherings, taking in figures from the Beat and Peace movements such as Michael McLure and Timothy Leary. These often playful photographs were counterbalanced by images of tense and volatile events, such as the 1965 march from Selma to Montgomery at the height of the African-American Civil Rights Movement, where he accompanied Martin Luther King. The vitality and directness of the images and the sense of time and place that they convey during a decade when American society was undergoing extraordinary upheaval, resonated strongly with cultural production of the period. Royal Academy until 25th August.
Barbara Kruger features new and recent work by the American artist known for her iconic and provocative text works. Barbara Kruger's instantly recognisable works incorporate bold slogans, colour and dramatic presentations of text and image, to investigate strategies of power and influence at play in mass media and contemporary popular culture. The exhibition includes a new site-specific text work that envelops the entire surface area of a gallery from lintel to floor. Coloured black, white and green - a colour that has seldom appeared in her repertoire - this installation emerged in direct response to the distinctive quality of space and light in the gallery and life in the city. While the exhibition addresses ideas of value and consumerism, this work also presents a more philosophical trajectory, confronting the viewer with questions and declarations such as, "IS THERE LIFE WITHOUT PAIN?" "IS THAT ALL THERE IS?" and "THE BRUTAL RELENTLESS FEARFUL END OF IT ALL." The repeated motif of an emoticon references the explosion of digital culture across online and mobile platforms and the influence of these technologies on our lives. The exhibition also includes a series of classic paste-up works from the 1980s; 'Plenty LA', a film capturing the gaze of the phone-obsessed consumer; and 'Twelve', a 4 screen installation portraying exchanges between a series of characters that are both confrontational and evocative of the casual cruelty of soap operas, talk shows and political debate. Modern Art Oxford until 31st August.
Digital Revolution explores and celebrates the transformation of the arts through digital technology since the 1970s. The festival-style event, the most comprehensive presentation of digital creativity ever to be staged in Britain, comprising immersive and interactive art works alongside exhibition-based displays, takes place across the entire complex with ticketed and non-ticketed elements. The exhibition brings together for the first time a range of artists, filmmakers, architects, designers, musicians and game developers pushing the boundaries of their fields using digital media. It also looks to the future considering the impact of creative coding, DIY culture, digital communities and the creative possibilities offered by technologies including augmented reality, artificial intelligence, wearables and 3D printing. The show includes new commissions from artists Umbrellium, Universal Everything, Seeper, will.i.am and Yuri Suzuki; a collaboration with Google in the form of digital art commissions called DevArt, pushing the possibilities of coding as a creative art form, an online inspiration hub and a competition for undiscovered creative coders; work by Visual Effects Supervisor Paul Franklin and his team at Double Negative for Christopher Nolan's film Inception; plus works by artists and performers including Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Chris Milk, Aaron Koblin, Bjork, Amon Tobin; and game developers such as Harmonix Music Systems. Barbican, London, until 14th September.
Radical Geometry: Modern Art Of South America spans a dynamic period in South American art, charting the emergence of several distinct artistic movements from the 1930s to the 1970s. From radical innovations in the use of colour and form to new materials like neon and interactive, kinetic sculpture, this exhibition of 80 works reveals some of the most original art of the last 100 years. The display explores the art produced in distinct areas of South America. In Montevideo, Uruguay, Joaquín Torres-Garcia founded the School of the South in the 1930s, through which he planned a new Pan-American art that drew on indigenous American influences. Across the Rio de la Plata, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, a group of artists including Gyula Kosice created Arte Madí that challenged the conventions of traditional painting in the 1940s, such as Juan Mele's 'Irregular Frame'. Further north, from the 1950s artists in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, such as Helio Oiticica and Lygia Clark likewise challenged the notions of art by removing it from the walls of galleries and placing it in the hands of the viewer. Finally in Caracas, Venezuela from the 1970s artists worked with optical illusion to create sculpture and paintings that interacted with the viewer and responded to the light of the tropics, such as Jesus Soto's 'Nylon Cube' and Carlos Cruz Diez's 'Physichromie No 500'. All three regions created new and challenging geometric abstractions that captured the optimism that swept across these countries. Royal Academy of Arts until 28th September.
The Lost Tomb Of Robert The Bruce brings together a collection of long lost artefacts for the first time in over 200 years, and explores the process of archaeological reconstruction. The exhibition presents the first complete 3D digital model of the tomb of Robert the Bruce, creating a detailed visualisation of the tomb architecture in its original setting. Robert the Bruce was King of Scotland from 1306 until his death in 1329. He was buried in the choir of Dunfermline Abbey and his grave marked by an impressive gilded white marble tomb imported from Paris. The tomb was lost in the turmoil of the Reformation era, but a grave and fragments of carved and gilded stone, believed to be those of the vanished tomb, were found in 1818. These fragments have never been on public display together before. A further fragment has recently been found in the collections at Abbotsford, the home of Sir Walter Scott. The identification of these remains and the design of the royal tomb have long been the subject of debate. The visualisation consists of an animated film that shows the position of the remaining fragments and also a 3D flythrough of the reconstructed tomb. In addition to this exhibition, the museum is the home of other Bruce relics, including a cast of his skull, a toe bone, coffin handle and nails, and a fragment of the cloth of gold that his body was wrapped in. Hunterian Museum, Glasgow, until 4th January.
Time Machines: Daniel Weil And The Art Of Design is the first retrospective of the work of the Argentinean whose career spans 30 years at the forefront of design practice, and has taught and inspired the next generation. The exhibition features Daniel Weil's work from young Royal College of Art student to longstanding Partner at Pentagram. Witty and thought-provoking, the display features a series of specially created pieces, as well opening up Weil's sketchbooks and personal archive for the first time. The exhibition includes some of his earliest work, such as 1981's influential Bag Radio, as well as commissions for Swatch, United Airlines, Krug, Mothercare and the Pet Shop Boys. Clocks, cutlery, a chess set - nearly all of Weil's designs evolve from simple pencil drawings in one of the hundreds of identical hardback sketchbooks that he has always used as the starting point for designing. On display for the first time, these sketchbooks are shown alongside the mass of ephemera that activates his imagination. The exhibition focuses on the process of design, about how a designer thinks and works. Weil presents his experience and philosophy of design practice as a manifesto of 'actions for designers'. Continuously inventive, Weil plays with fundamental elements of time, light, space and sound - always seeking a new connection, a fresh approach. The pieces on display, from found objects to finished products, tell a story not of design, but of designing. Design Museum, 28 Shad Thames, London SE1, until 25th August.
Making Colour traces the history of making colour in Western paintings from the Middle Ages to the end of the 19th century. The exhibition brings together the worlds of art and science to explain how artists overcame the technical challenges involved in creating colour. It charts the material problems faced by artists in achieving their painterly aims, the breakthroughs they struggled for, and the difficulties they faced in creating works of art that were both beautiful and enduring. The display examines the origins of paint sources, be it the natural world or human invention, and their supply, manufacture and application, as well as their permanence and colour effect. It begins by examining how theories of colour, such as an awareness of primary colour, or of the colour spectrum, have influenced painters' use of pigments, and their quest for new materials. The journey runs from lapis lazuli to cobalt blue, ancient vermilion to bright cadmium red, through yellow, orange, purple and verdigris to deep green viridian, and on to gold and silver, in a series of colour-themed rooms. Among the works and objects on view are Monet's 'Lavacourt under Snow', JMW Turner's paintbox, van Dyck's 'Lady Elizabeth Thimbelby and her Sister', an elaborate majolica plate portraying Vulcan at his forge with Venus, Sassoferrato's 'The Virgin in Prayer', lapis lazuli figurines, Degas's 'La Coiffure' and Masaccio's 'Saints Jerome and John the Baptist'. The exhibition is complemented by a scientific experiment that introduces a new world of contemporary and scientific thought on colour, dealing with human colour perception, and the degree to which it is individually variable. It also considers the ways in which the brain processes different visual information, for example in lighting paintings, and the impact that this has on our perception of colour. National Gallery until 7th September.
Open For Business is a comprehensive documentation of contemporary British manufacturing and industry, captured by the lenses of 9 international photographers from the legendary co-operative agency Magnum Photos. During 2013, Jonas Bendiksen, Stuart Franklin, Bruce Gilden, David Hurn, Peter Marlow, Martin Parr, Mark Power, Chris Steele-Perkins and Alessandra Sanguinetti visited over 100 workplaces in 9 cities across Britain, from one-man businesses to FTSE 100 companies. Their photographs range from traditional, handmade crafts to modern, intelligent automation, and from foundries and assembly lines to research laboratories and high tech cleanrooms, showing an economic sector of resilience and diversity. British industry faces several challenges and this display reflects the daily struggle as businesses attempt to cut costs, streamline processes and level up to international competition. The images reveal that, while in some ways industry has changed so much, in others it has changed so little. The photographs document the shifting balance between white and blue-collar workers, the physical reality of process automation and of environments in which a growing staff manage activity from a computer screen. The project raises questions about the corporate responsibility of employers to their employees, highlights the significance of migration to the workforce and shows the pride exuded from workers who make a huge variety of products. It captures British manufacturing's effect on culture and community life, and celebrates the work, activities and lives of its employees. Museum Of Science & Industry, Manchester, until 3rd August.
Peace Breaks Out! London And Paris In The Summer Of 1814 explores a pivotal moment in the history of Europe through the eyes of its contemporaries. The Peace of 1814 and the subsequent congress of Vienna in 1815, after the final defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo, laid the geo-political framework of the European Empires that would dominate the Continent and much of the globe up to the outbreak of the First World War. The Allies who celebrated the signing of the Treaty as guests of the Prince Regent in London, would, almost exactly one hundred years later, face each on the battlefields of Europe - this time as enemies. The exhibition includes over 100 rare items, including celebratory paintings and prints created for the festivities held in London and across the United Kingdom to mark the Treaty; drawings of Paris, demonstrating the architectural changes that took place under Napoleon's government; Napoleonica - objects belonging to Napoleon and his closest collaborators; and a quirky, satirical depiction of Englishmen visiting Paris, as seen by the French. There are accompanying by works by contemporary artists Adam Dant, Romilly Saumarez Smith, Laura Knight, Alice Pattullo, Bridie Hall and Paul Bommer offering 21st century interpretations of the Peace of 1814 and of the Regency and Parisian fashions that were so celebrated that year. Sir John Soane Museum, 13 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2, until 13th September.
Otto Dix provides a rare opportunity to see a selection from the series of prints 'Der Krieg' (The War) by one of the artists who revealed the vision of the apocalypse that was the First World War. The 19 prints on show were made by Otto Dix 10 years after the beginning of the War, presumably because it was only then that he could return to the experiences that he went through in the trenches. The prints were ground-breaking, through the impact of the images that Dix conjured, and also in the unique combination of multiple print-making techniques that he employed. Dix dramatises the atmosphere of physical and moral decay: decomposing bodies, shelled soldiers, and surreally empty landscapes. When the Nazis came to power in Germany, they regarded Dix as a degenerate artist and had him sacked from his post as an art teacher at the Dresden Academy. Dix's paintings 'The Trench' and 'War Cripples' were exhibited in the state-sponsored Munich 1937 exhibition of degenerate art, Entartete Kunst, and were later burned. Prints in the exhibition include 'Stormtroops advancing under a gas attack', 'Mealtime in the Trenches ','Corpse of a horse', 'Collapsed trenches', 'Front-line Soldier in Brussels', 'Dead sentry in the trenches' and perhaps best known of all, 'Skull'. De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, until 27th July.
The Glamour Of Italian Fashion 1945 - 2014 celebrates Italy's rich and influential contribution to fashion from the end of the Second World War to the present. The exhibition draws out the defining factors unique to the Italian fashion industry: the use of luxurious materials; expert textile production; specialist, regional manufacturing; and its strength as a source of both dynamic menswear and glamorous womenswear. The story of Italian fashion is explored through the pivotal individuals and organisations that have contributed to its reputation for quality and style, within the prevailing social and political context. On display are around 100 ensembles and accessories by leading Italian fashion houses including Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gianfranco Ferre, Gucci, Missoni, Prada, Pucci and Versace, through to the next generation of talent, including couture by Giambattista Valli, ready-to-wear from Fausto Puglisi and work from Valentino's new designers duo Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli. The show also notes the creativity of influential but less remembered figures such as post-war couturiers Sorelle Fontana and Mila Schon and design innovators such as Walter Albini. The display highlights the exceptional quality of techniques, materials and expertise for which Italy has become renowned. Its status as manufacturer and exporter of some of the world's most stylish and well-made fashion and textiles is linked to the strength of its traditional industries including spinning, dyeing, weaving, cutting and stitching; some of these traditions have been practised in regions around Italy for hundreds of years. Victoria & Albert Museum until 27th July.
Starring Vivien Leigh: A Centenary Celebration tells the story of the film and theatre career of the celebrated actress, with particular focus on her Oscar winning role in Gone With The Wind. The display features over 50 portraits of Vivien Leigh, including rare vintage photographs, magazine covers, vintage film stills and press books. Many of the photographs have not been exhibited before, and include images by leading photographers such as James Abbe Jr, Bassano, Cecil Beaton, Clarence Sinclair Bull, Howard Coster, Angus McBean, Norman Parkinson, Sasha, Laszlo Willinger and Madame Yevonde. For 20 years, with her husband Laurence Olivier, Leigh was part of the most celebrated, talented and glamorous British couples of the era. Her most famous performance, as Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With The Wind, brought her worldwide recognition and the first of two Academy Awards. The second Oscar was for the film of Tennessee Williams's play A Streetcar Named Desire, opposite Marlon Brando. Photographs in this display span Leigh's career, beginning with a still of her first un-credited film performance in Things Are Looking Up and ending with her last film role in Stanley Kramer's Ship Of Fools. Other theatrical and film roles represented in the display include her first appearance with her future husband Laurence Olivier in Fire Over England, with Rex Harrison in Storm In A Teacup, with Robert Taylor in Waterloo Bridge, as Nelson's mistress Lady Hamilton with Olivier in That Hamilton Woman, and in the George Bernard Shaw's Caesar and Cleopatra. National Portrait Gallery until 27th July.