What’s On In The Capital?

A culture vulture’s guide to the best of the rest! An exclusive selection of art lectures, sales, exhibitions, festivals and creative events in London taking place this week and beyond… (By Shio).

Serpentine Galleries will show an extensive 10-year selection of works by Tomma Abts (2006 Turner Prize Winner). Abts states of her methodology: ‘It is a completely open process, starting from a point of nothing, with no guaranteed outcome, every single time. I am not making process painting; the process is always directed at the final image, and the precise definition of it.’.


Tomma Abts – Serpentine Gallery, W2.  1st solo show in a UK public space for works from the last 10 years.  2006 Turner Prize Winner.  Magnetic acrylic and oil paintings using 48cm x 38cm format.  Free entry.  7th June to 9th September.  (serpentinegalleries.org)

Michael Jackson:  On The Wall – National Portrait Gallery, WC2H.  This landmark exhibition explores the influence of Michael Jackson on some of the leading names in contemporary art, spanning several generations of artists across all media. Coincides with Jackson’s 60th birthday.  28th June to 21st October.  Tickets from £15.50 – Book now!  (npg.org.uk)

Printing a New World:  Commercial Graphics in the 1930s – V&A, SW7.  Distinctive examples of small commercial graphic design jobs from British, European and American designers reveal the daily lives of ordinary people during a time of rapid change and technological innovation.  Until 19th August.  Free entry.  (vam.ac.uk)

Rodin and the Art of Ancient Greece – British Museum, WC1B.  Like many archaeological ruins, the Parthenon sculptures had been broken and weathered over centuries, but Rodin took inspiration from the powerful expression that they conveyed through the body alone. He even removed the heads and limbs from his own figures to make them closer to the broken relics of the past. By doing so, he created a new genre of contemporary art – the headless, limbless torso.  Until 29th July.  Tickets £17 (Adults); Under 16s FREE.  (britishmuseum.org)

The London Open 2018 – Whitechapel Gallery, E1.  The London Open 2018 brings together critical and dynamic art that reflects on the experience of living in a global city now. This triennial open submission exhibition features 22 artists working across painting, sculpture, performance and video.  Artists: Larry Achiampong, Rachel Ara, Gabriella Boyd, Hannah Brown, Rachael Champion, Gary Colclough, George Eksts, Ayan Farah, French & Mottershead, Vikesh Govind, Richard Healy, Des Lawrence, Tom Lock, Céline Manz, Uriel Orlow, Rachel Pimm, Renee So, Alexis Teplin, Elisabeth Tomlinson, Jonathan Trayte, Tom Varley and Andrea Luka Zimmerman.  #TheLondonOpen2018.  8th June to 26th August.  Free entry.  (whitechapelgallery.org)

At The Jetty, Greenwich Peninsula, you could end up with work from the likes of Sir Peter Blake, Yoko Ono or Gilbert & George in their Secret 7″ surprise exhibition and sale on 8th June.

Secret 7″ – The Jetty, Greenwich Peninsula.  7 singles from Jimi Hendrix, Manic Street Preachers, Primal Scream, The Clash et al re-pressed onto 7” vinyl for a limited run of 100 each. Artists are then invited to submit sleeve designs for each one, with the resulting 700 original artworks displayed in a final exhibition. Before the identity of the artists are revealed, the records are sold at a flat rate of £50 each with proceeds going to mental health charity MIND.  8th June.  11am to 7.30pm.  (jetty.greenwichpeninsula.co.uk)


Spirit of Change:  The Transform Pit Party – Barbican, EC2Y.  Producing bold and playful festivals in their home city by reimagining what theatre can look like and what it can do, Transform arrive at the Barbican for the first time with an energising two-day programme. Featuring adventurous companies and performers from the north of England and beyond, there are chances to watch, converse, interact one-on-one and get fully involved in the Spirit of Change.  8th to 9th June.  Tickets £12/£7.  (barbican.org.uk)

Akram Khan Company – XENOS – Sadler’s Wells, EC1R.  Shifting between classical kathak and contemporary dance, Khan conjures up the shell-shocked dream of a colonial soldier in the First World War. XENOS takes place where humanity stands in wonder and disarray, on the border between East and West, past and present, mythology and technology.   Until 9th June.  Age:  (Children under 5 not admitted).  (sadlerswells.com)

Rodney Ackland:  Absolute Hell – National Theatre (Lyttleton Theatre), SE1.  Bomb-blasted London. A Soho den in the hangover from World War II, where members drink into the darkness, night after night. Lying, fighting and seducing, these lost souls and bruised lovers struggle from the rubble of war towards an unknown future.  Until 16th June.  Tickets from £15.  (nationaltheatre.org.uk)

Festivals & Fairs:-

Splayed Festival – The Place, WC1H.  ‘During a week of bold and playful performance, engaging discussion and a free zine, conventional notions of femininity will be thrown into question and new possibilities set rubbing up against each other.’.  6th to 9th June.  See website for individual event ticket prices.  (theplace.org.uk)

Architecture and Us Family Festival Day – National Gallery, WC2N.  Work with moving-image artists Kaleidoworks to transform the Gallery into a landscape of mysterious monuments and towers that evolves throughout the day.  Part of the London Festival of Architecture 2018 and Open House Families weekend.  9th June.  Free entry.  (nationalgallery.org.uk)

Unamplifire 2018 – Master Shipwrights Palace, Deptford, SE8.  4th edition of the Nest Collective’s unplugged celebration of worldwide roots music.  Non-stop music across 4 stages, indoors and out.  Craft beer, French wine, Breton cider and Gosnell’s London Mead.  Delicious freshly prepared food.  Campfire singarounds and more!  9th June.  Tickets £28/£35.  (thenestcollective.co.uk)


Painting and Cocktail Night – The Snooty Fox, Highbury, N5.  Chill and enjoy producing your own Mona Lisa with a taste of the Caribbean.  2-hour workshop including all materials.  Step-by-step instructions – all artistic levels welcome.  Age: 18+ with ID.  7th June, from 7.30pm.  Tickets £20.  (designmynight.com)

Summer Course – London Fine Art Studios, Battersea, SW11.  Perfect immersion in fine arts training.  Students will focus on a different discipline beginning with Foundation and progressing through Figure, Portrait to Landscape or Sculpture.  Pricing – £375 (1 week) to £1300 (4 weeks) during July.  (londonfineartstudios.com)

Antiuniversity:  Radical Ecology – Doomed Gallery, Dalston, E8.  The Anarchist Federation will present ideas from their new pamphlet on an anti-capitalist view of environmental issues, including both the root causes (spoiler alert: it’s capitalism) and the false solutions offered up as ways out of the crisis. Introductory talk followed by discussion about ways forward for an anti-capitalist environmental movement.  9th June, 4 – 6pm.  (doomedgallery.tumblr.com)

Sales & Markets:-

Crafty Fox Market – Kindred Studios, Maida Hill, W9.  Featuring 60+ designer/makers per day, creative workshops, installations and music. There is a café onsite and the event will form part of the wider open studios event at Kindred Studios where you can visit the 175 artists who produce their work in this beautiful and inspiring creative space.  9th June, 11am to 5pm.  Free entry.  (craftyfoxmarket.co.uk)

London Antique Textiles & Tribal Art Fair – Olympia Hilton Hotel, W14.  The fair is in its eighteenth year and gathers about fifty leading specialist dealers offering for sale a dazzling array of unrivalled antique textiles, vintage costumes, carpets, aubussons, lace, fine linen, tapestries, quilts and tribal art.  10th June, 9am to 6pm.  Tickets £5 (early entry £10).  (pa-antiques.co.uk)


[Credits:  Feature Image – Transform at The Barbican (barbican.org.uk)]





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