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Picasso Portraits - National Portrait Gallery

Exhibition preview

AN EXHIBITION entited Picasso Portraits will be on display at the National Portrait Gallery (Wolfson Gallery) from October 6, 2016 to February 5, 2017.

Picasso’s portraits epitomise the astonishing variety and innovation of his art. This major exhibition of over eighty works focuses on the artist’s portrayal of family, friends and lovers and reveals his creative processes as he moved freely between drawing from life, humorous caricature and expressive painting from memory.

On display will be portraits from all periods of Picasso’s career and in all media, from the realist paintings of his boyhood to his later ultra-spontaneous canvases. The works on show will range from celebrated masterpieces loaned by international institutions to works in private collections being shown in the United Kingdom for the first time.

The exhibition is co-organised by the National Portrait Gallery, London and the Museu Picasso, Barcelona.

National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place, London, WC2H 0HE

Website: www.npg.org.uk/

India’s Gateway: Gujarat, Mumbai & Britain - Redbridge Museum

Exhibition preview

ON DISPLAY at Redbridge Museum in Ilford, east London from October 18, 2016 to January 28, 2017, India’s Gateway: Gujarat, Mumbai & Britain explores the links between Gujarat, Mumbai and Britain which stretch back over 400 years.

Gujarat has been a centre for international trade for thousands of years, its coastline studded with ports connecting India with the outside world.

In 1615, when Sir Thomas Roe of Woodford (which is now in the London Borough of Redbridge) first secured a base for London’s East India Company at Surat on the coast of Gujarat, the region became the first point of contact between Britain and the Indian subcontinent.

It was the beginning of an extraordinary relationship that endures to this day. This relationship changed Gujarat and its people, who in turn have profoundly altered the fabric of modern-day Britain. Over half of British Indians can trace their roots back to Gujarat, and large Gujarati communities can now be found all over the world.

Back in Britain, East India Company merchants used their wealth to build magnificent estates during the 1700s in places such as Ilford, Wanstead and Woodford, which are now part of the London Borough of Redbridge. Later, from the 1960s onwards, many Gujaratis moved to Britain, some via east Africa, and made their home in east London as well as other places such as west London, Leicester and Bradford.

This exhibition at Redbridge Museum presents a vivid portrait of the region and explores the lives and experiences of Gujarati communities today in both India and east London.

The display is based around new photography and film by renowned photographer Tim Smith complemented with material from Redbridge Museum’s collections.

Tim Smith is based in Yorkshire and explores stories around migration, culture and identity. He says:

“Over the past three decades I’ve photographed many of the different British Asian communities in the UK. I’m fascinated by individual life stories that often depend on chance and circumstance but are also shaped by the impact of world events: whether it be the arrival of British ships on Indian shores over 400 years ago, the Partition of India in 1947 or the need for labour in the post-war reconstruction of Britain.

“The idea for the exhibition was in part inspired by something a British Indian friend said to me once: ‘There’s a little bit of India in everyone that lives in Britain. I just wish more people realised that’.

“With India’s Gateway, I wanted to tell these stories from the other end. By travelling back along the lines of migration to modern-day Gujarat and Mumbai, I wanted to take photographs and gather stories that explored the shared history between Britain and India, much of which is still visible today.

“Before setting off to India, I travelled around England asking British Gujaratis for advice about where to go and who to meet in Gujarat. Redbridge Museum had already made a research trip, funded by the British Council, to explore some of these local connections and that was an immense help.

“I travelled in 2014 in the so-called ‘NRI season’ when many Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) escape the cold British winter to visit their family homes. This enabled me to meet, photograph and interview lots of people from Britain, as well as hundreds of Indians with family and business connections to the UK.

“I hope the exhibition will reflect aspects of the British Indian experience, as well as giving people an insight into how our shared histories have ‘put a little bit of India in everyone who lives in Britain’, and have left a little bit of Britain in India too.”

The book and exhibition has been sponsored by Prashad. This award-winning restaurant in Yorkshire showcases some of the very best vegetarian Gujarati food, with founder Kaushy Patel’s recipes compiled in her best-selling cookbooks. The story of her family’s journey from Gujarat to Britain is one of many featured in both the India’s Gateway book and exhibition.

The India’s Gateway book which accompanies the exhibition will be available for sale at Redbridge Museum at a special introductory price. It is published by Northern Arts Publications, ISBN 978-1-911148043.

This exhibition is part of a national tour to six different towns and cities, assisted by Oriental Arts and supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England’s Strategic Touring Fund.

Image: Premji Hari Manvar, who works from his home in the weaving community of Hamapur near Junagadh, central Gujarat. Photo credit: Tim Smith.

Admission: Free.

Times: Tuesday to Friday, 10am – 5pm; Saturday, 10am – 4pm; closed Sunday and Monday.

There is a full events programme to complement the exhibition.

Kite Crazy! – Saturday, October 22 at 3pm. Free.

Free storytelling event about the largest kite festival in the world in Gujarat. No need to book. Led by Shweta Aggarwal, author of the Dev and Ollie books (www.devandollie.com).

India’s Gateway Treasure Trail – Tuesday, October 25 to Saturday, October 29 from 11am – 3pm.

Free family trail and puppet/mask making (50p). No need to book.

Sail Away to India – Tuesday, October 25 from 10.30am – 12 noon. £1.50 per child. Book at www.thelittleboxoffice.com/vision.

Storytelling, rhymes and craft for under 5s.

Super Saris! – Wednesday, October 26 from 10.30am – 12 noon. Ages 7+. £1.50 per child. Book at www.thelittleboxoffice.com/vision.

Make a sari in the traditional Gujarati Bandhani style and then learn how to wear it.

Redbridge Museum, Redbridge Central Library, Clements Road, Ilford, Essex, IG1 1EA

Tel: 020 8708 2317

Website: www.redbridge.gov.uk/

British Museum acquires rare group of post-war Picasso prints

The British Museum

THE British Museum has acquired sixteen important lithograph prints and three aquatint prints by Pablo Picasso covering the post-war period from the late 1940s to the late 1950s. This acquisition closes the last major gap in the British Museum’s representation of Picasso’s achievements as a printmaker.

Highlighting key themes in his work from this period, including his relationship with the youthful and independent-minded Françoise Gilot, the lithographs were produced in Paris when he was working in close collaboration with the printer Fernand Mourlot.

The large aquatints from the early 1950s show Picasso’s experimentation with the painterly possibilities of the technique working with young printers at the Paris workshop of Roger Lacourière with whom he had first worked in the 1930s on the Vollard Suite.

This exciting acquisition is the final part of the Museum’s sustained campaign to represent more fully Picasso’s work as a printmaker. His achievements in this field, where he produced over 2,500 prints principally in etching, lithography, aquatint and linocut, rank alongside his great predecessors Dürer, Rembrandt and Goya.

The new addition follows the acquisition in 2013 of 17 large Picasso linocut prints from 1962, with the generous help of the Art Fund and private donations (currently on show in the Lady Lever Art Gallery as part of a UK touring exhibition).

The momentum to augment the British Museum’s Picasso print collection was given a tremendous boost by the acquisition in 2011 of the famous Vollard Suite, the complete set of 100 etchings made in the 1930s, thanks to the extraordinary generosity of the Hamish Parker Charitable Trust in memory of the donor’s father, Major Horace Parker. In 2014 Hamish Parker donated the funds for the purchase of Picasso’s great etching series made in late age, the 347 Suite, named after the number of prints the octogenarian artist produced in an astonishing creative burst over six months in 1968.

With this new purchase of post-war prints, the British Museum’s collection now covers all key periods in Picasso’s printmaking, beginning with the Frugal Repast etching of 1904, the Vollard Suite from the 1930s, his engagement with linocut in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and his brilliant return to etching in his final years.

Of the sixteen lithographs, six are inspired by the youthful beauty of the aspiring artist Françoise Gilot, whom he first met in 1943 when she was 21 and he was 62. They show how fluidly Picasso manipulated and reconfigured the face of his lover, distinguished by her long hair and columnar neck. The eroticism of the figure in the Composition is checked by Picasso’s arrangement of these elements as if they were a Cubist still-life suggesting a guitar and strings.

More abstracted is the tribal mask-like presentation of her features in the Form. Both works were produced on the same day, November 21, 1948. In Figure of 1949, she stands out from a solvent-spattered background like a queen of the night against a star-studded sky.

In one of the final depictions of his partner, Head on black background of May 9, 1953, Picasso combines frontal and profile views, an evocation of moody introspection made four months before Françoise permanently moved out with the children in September 1953. Happier times are recalled in The Artist and the Child of February 20, 1949 showing the pregnant Françoise painting at the easel while the toddler Claude plays with his toys at her feet.

The little artist of May 18, 1954 was made during a brief visit to Picasso by Françoise and the children. In addition to the use of colour to enliven the composition, Picasso rested the five transparent transfer papers, one for each colour, on a wooden board or table so that when he drew with the coloured crayons he could achieve an uneven textured effect in contrast to the whiteness of the paper on which Claude draws.

Picasso’s sense of identification with the sensuality of the pagan world was very much part of his Mediterranean heritage. Bacchanalian scenes feature in several of the newly acquired lithographs from the 1950s. In Rehearsal made over six consecutive days in February 1954, the pagan and the modern world are brought together in the form of the tambourine-playing satyr and the youthful trumpeter surrounded by three voluptuous female nudes.

The same figure appears in the lithograph Figures and Dove made a few days earlier (February 18, 1954) where the protagonists include a Picasso-like potbellied old man gazing mutely at three naked women.

The group of lithographs concludes with three portraits of Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler (1884-1979), the German-born dealer with whom Picasso maintained a long, if sometimes difficult, relationship, from before the first world war until the artist’s death in 1973. Made in a single day, June 3, 1957, Picasso adopted a more representational style to record, perhaps not without a hint of malice, Kahnweiler’s bald cranium, lined features and elephantine ears.

While lithography was Picasso’s primary focus as a printmaker from 1945 to the mid-1950s, he also explored further possibilities with the technique of sugar aquatint. The three newly acquired aquatints made in collaboration with the printer Roger Lacourière show Picasso’s dazzling mastery of the medium.

In Hen of 1952 the artist dabbed with his fingers the sugar-lift solution on the plate to create the effect of the bird’s dappled plumage, and then used a scraper to define the direction of its feathers. Visitors to the Studio of 1955 depicts a Goya-like group of figures (some of whom are satyrs) observing the elderly artist at work.

The 1955 portrait of Jacqueline Roque, the beautiful young woman, who would later become Picasso’s second wife, is the most direct and the most personal of the three aquatints. His tenderly sensual portrait was made by brushing the sugar-lift solution to the plate; her profile is contrasted by the rapid flourishes of the brush that describe her hair tied in a ponytail. Her calm introspection is markedly different from the direct forcefulness of the lithographs inspired by Françoise Gilot from just a few years earlier.

This rare group of post-war Picasso prints, ranging in expression and style, underlines the importance of representing the artist’s work in depth. Now holding over 550 Picasso prints in the collection covering all phases of the artist’s career, the British Museum is the destination point for the study of his graphic work both nationally and internationally.

These sixteen lithograph prints and three aquatints will go on display at the British Museum in January 2017.

Stephen Deuchar, Art Fund director, said: “Art Fund trustees simply couldn’t resist giving a major grant for the acquisition of this captivating group of works. Even in a collection as huge and important the British Museum’s prints and drawings, they stand out for their visual and art historical punch.”

Hartwig Fischer, director of the British Museum, said: “These exceptional lithograph and aquatint prints are a significant addition to the British Museum’s holdings of Picasso’s graphic work, one that now stands us among the most important public collections of Picasso in the world. I am very grateful to the Art Fund and the individual donors who have secured these unique works of art for the Museum’s Prints and Drawings Collection.”

The prints will go on public display early next year from the last week in January to the first week of March 2017 and are available to study upon appointment at the Prints & Drawings Study Room at the British Museum.

Animality: Animals and Art - Marian Goodman Gallery London

Gabriel Orozco, Untitled, 2016.

Exhibition preview

ANIMALITY: Animals and Art – A Fairy Story by Jens Hoffmann will be on display at the Marian Goodman Gallery London from November 3 to December 17, 2016.

The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which. George Orwell

Man is the cruelest animal. Friedrich Nietzsche

Why have animals not been the subject of greater interest in contemporary conversations and historical discourses in the arts? With this question as a premise, Animality examines how an artistic and theoretical impetus might be formed that challenges the way we think about beings that are not of our own species.

In its essence, Animality asks what we as human beings can learn about ourselves when looking at the limitations of our own thinking, with respect to nonhuman animals. The exhibition leads us to reflect on the importance of addressing ethical issues, thinking beyond our own cultures, and questioning accepted assumptions of who we are.

Animality proposes that while some distinctions between humans and animals are valid, the two groups are more productively conceived as parts of an ontological whole.

The exhibition unfolds around six themes— Crossings, Extinction, Markings, Origins, Traces and Variations – each introduced by a short wall text guiding the visitor.

Animality participates in a broader philosophical debate of the past two centuries that includes such thinkers as Friedrich Nietzsche, Martin Heidegger, Georges Bataille, Emmanuel Levinas, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, Jacques Derrida, and Michel Foucault, who has a particular importance to this exhibition.

In his groundbreaking 1964 book Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason, Foucault connects the idea of human madness with that of animalism. He describes how terms such as ‘wild beasts’, ‘untamed, and ‘frenzied’ have been applied not only to those actually suffering from mental illness, but also to humans from exotic places and cultures that, in the eyes of colonizers, had chosen to live like animals and thus were treated accordingly.

Animality explores clear parallels between Foucault’s idea and our contemporary realities of refugees and immigrants, expanding the dialogue to the larger social and political issues of our time. Contemporary and historical artworks as well as numerous artifacts are juxtaposed, allowing for relationships between art and non-art materials to emerge, creating strong and provocative links between historical and contemporary realities.

The display of the exhibition follows the layout of the zoo. Over the last 150 years, zoos have developed completely new display strategies to simulate animals’ natural habitats and retire as inhumane the old-fashioned cage. The layout of Animality examines the meaning of nature in the city by looking at how zoos have assembled and displayed their animal collections, contrasting the idea of museum with that of a zoo.

Indeed, both zoos and museums are concrete expressions of long-standing tensions between wildness and civilization. In their efforts to promote an appreciation of art and nature, both museums and zoos reveal much about how our culture envisions the world and humanity’s place in it.

Jens Hoffmann is a writer and exhibition maker. He is currently Director of Special Exhibitions and Public Programs at The Jewish Museum, New York, Co-Artistic Director of FRONT International: Cleveland Exhibition of Contemporary Art and Senior Curator at the MOCA Detroit.

A fully illustrated catalogue designed by A Practice for Everyday Life will accompany this exhibition. To commemorate Animality, Marian Goodman Gallery will sell a limited edition print by George Shiras.

Times: Tuesday to Saturday, 10am – 6pm.

Marian Goodman Gallery, 5-8 Lower John Street, London, W1F 9DY

Strictly Come Dancing 10th Anniversary Live Tour

Event preview

CELEBRATING ten FAB-U-LOUS years, the Strictly Come Dancing Live UK Tour extravaganza is back on the road in January 2017 for 30 spectacular super-sized shows across the country!

Tickets for the UK Tour will go on sale at 10am on September 23, 2016 (pre-sale from September 21).

BBC One’s hugely popular entertainment show Strictly Come Dancing returns to TV screens later this month with a new exciting celebrity line-up and a host of breathtaking dance routines guaranteed to leave audiences spellbound.

And the Strictly Live Tour is no different – this must-see event for fans of all ages brings the magic of the TV show to an arena near you.

This year’s tour will star TV Judges Len Goodman and Craig Revel Horwood. They will be joined on the judging panel by former Strictly professional dancer and winner of the 2006 series, Karen Hardy.

The tour will also feature a brand new host, Countryfile’s Anita Rani, who was a semi-finalist in the 2015 series and a contestant on this year’s live tour.

Craig Revel Horwood will direct the tour for the seventh year, creating all of the showbiz sparkle, breathtaking choreography and incredible live music that Strictly is famous for – audiences can experience everything that they love about the TV show live on stage.

Head Judge Len Goodman said: “The live tour always has such a great atmosphere and the 10th anniversary tour will definitely be one to remember, especially as this will come as I complete my final year on the TV series as Head Judge. Rest assured audiences, this tour will be a ten from Len!”

Craig Revel Horwood added: “I am very pleased to be back on tour with legendary Len and also welcoming Karen to the tour’s judging panel. This 10th year is going to be bigger and better than ever before. We’ll be pulling out all the stops to make sure that this anniversary tour is the best yet!”

Guest Judge Karen Hardy said: “I couldn’t be more excited to be joining Len and Craig in the judging hot seat. Having seen the fantastic line-up for this year’s TV series, I know that audiences around the country are going to be in for a real treat. I can’t wait to get started!”

Host Anita Rani said: “I had such a great experience on the series and the tour, that I jumped at the opportunity to come back and host the tour. I had a taster as tour host last year when I stood in for Mel Giedroyc, which was so much fun. I’m really looking forward to being back in front of the lovely Strictly audiences to celebrate 10 years on the road!”

This entertainment extravaganza will star many of the celebrities and professional dancers from the hugely anticipated 14th BBC One series, as they take to the dance floor and recreate their most popular TV dance routines. Details of celebrities and professional dancers appearing on tour will be announced over the coming months.

The judges will provide their invaluable wisdom, advice and scores at each performance on tour. But not only are the celebrities and their dance partners competing for the judges’ scores, they will also be battling to win votes from the arena audiences, who can text vote via their mobile phones and ultimately have the power to decide who wins the coveted Glitterball Trophy at the end of each show.

The 30 show spectacular will open at the Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham on January 20, 2017. The tour will then visit the biggest entertainment venues across the UK: Metro Radio Arena Newcastle, Sheffield Arena, The SSE Arena, Glasgow, Motorpoint Arena Nottingham, First Direct Arena Leeds, Manchester Arena, Liverpool’s Echo Arena, The SSE Arena, Wembley (February 9 – 10), before culminating at The O2, London (February 11 – 12).

Last December, an audience of nearly 12 million viewers tuned in to watch the nail-biting Strictly Come Dancing Grand Final on BBC One, when The Wanted singer Jay McGuiness was crowned the winner with his professional dance partner Aliona Vilani. The television format, internationally known as Dancing with the Stars, is one of the most successful TV formats ever created and has been sold into over 50 countries around the world.

To book tickets, contact the venue or call 0844 875 8758. For online bookings visit www.ticketzone.co.uk or www.ticketmaster.co.uk. For more information visit www.strictlycomedancinglive.com.

NoFit State bring Bianco to the Southbank this Christmas

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FOLLOWING a critically-acclaimed world tour, the UK’s leading circus company, NoFit State, are bringing their ground-breaking promenade show Bianco to London’s Southbank Centre for the first time. Directed by Firenza Guidi, it runs from November 23, 2016 to January 22, 2017.

Bianco, which promises to be more impressive and spectacular than ever before, was previously seen at the Roundhouse in 2013.

Pioneers of contemporary circus, NoFit State will bring their silver spaceship Big Top to Southbank Centre’s Hungerford Car Park, creating a new and memorable addition to London’s iconic landscape.

Bianco is a promenade experience unlike any other. With innovative rigging and counter-weighting techniques, it takes place above, behind and all around the audience, in an up-close and all-consuming theatrical spectacular.

The boundaries between artist and audience are broken down, immersing them in an intimate world of breath-taking and powerful performances, accompanied by an electrifying live band with an eclectic original score.

Rather than relying on a linear narrative, Bianco takes the audience on a journey of individual interpretation, creating a unique experience for all spectators. A production where the music, costumes, props, lighting and design influence the action as much as the story, Bianco creates a personal experience that is engaging and accessible for all ages.

Rupert Thomson, Senior Programmer for Performance and Dance, Southbank Centre said: “We’re absolutely delighted to be welcoming the world-class NoFit State company to Southbank Centre this winter, with a revamped version of their hit circus show Bianco. There is a great spirit to the company, and the style with which they work carries through beautifully to the show itself. NoFit State will offer audiences something altogether different and we can’t wait to have them a part of our jam-packed and diverse winter programme.”

Tom Rack, Artistic Director, NoFit State said: “We are thrilled to be bringing Bianco back to London, and to Southbank Centre for their Winter Festival supported by NatWest. This is the first time the show has performed in England in three years, and it’s going to be great to spend this winter closer to home.

Bianco has captivated and captured the hearts and minds of audiences in Hong Kong, New York, Australia, and in every corner of Europe. We are sure that London is going to love this raw, raucous and infectious contemporary circus experience.”

Bianco has music direction by David Murray, production design by Saz Moir, lighting by Adam Cobbley, costumes by Rhiannon Matthews and rigging design by Lyndall Merry.

NoFit State’s Big Top

Bringing together some of the most talented international circus performers with a diverse range of skills, the company of Bianco includes Lyndall Merry (Head Rigger/Performer), Joachim Aussibal, Junior Barbosa, François Bouvier, Edd Casey, Delia Ceruti, Augusts Dakteris, Jani Foldi, Enni Lymi, Felipe Nardiello, Jessica O’Connor, Danilo Pacheco, Blaze Tarsha, Lee Tinnion, Cecilia Zucchetti, and musicians Matt Collins, Doug Kemp, Annette Loose, and Andy Moore.

NoFit State Circus is presents Bianco in partnership with Southbank Centre as part of Winter Festival supported by NatWest.

Image (top): Bianco taken in New York. Photographer/Creator: Maike Schulz.

On Saturday, December 3 and Sunday, December 4, 2016, NoFit State Circus offer a variety of workshops in Clore Ballroom, Royal Festival Hall for all ages and abilities.

Children aged 7-12 years have the opportunity to explore soft youth circus skills including juggling, hula hoop, basic tumbling, poi, plate-spinning, diabolo and scarf juggling. A tight-wire area allows parents/guardians to help their child walk the tight-wire with a helping hand.

Ages 12+ and adults can explore additional skills including club and ball juggling, acrobalance and advanced tumbling.

The 45 minute workshops take place at 12pm, 1.30pm and 3pm. For further details visit www.southbankcentre.co.uk/.

There will also be a 45 minute pre-show Q&As on Thursday, January 5 and Tuesday, January 10, 2017, when the company and creative team discuss how Bianco is created. Free with purchased tickets for the show (limited availability). For further details visit www.southbankcentre.co.uk/.

For more information visit www.southbankcentre.co.uk/whatson/festivals-series/winter-festival or nofitstate.org/.

NoFit State’s Big Top in Hungerford Car Park, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX

Imperial Ice Stars bring The Nutcracker on Ice to Hyde Park Winter Wonderland’s 10th anniversary

The Nutcracker on Ice

Event preview

TO CELEBRATE the 10th anniversary of Hyde Park Winter Wonderland this year and following sold-out seasons at the Royal Albert Hall and several world tours, The Imperial Ice Stars will bring their dazzling production of The Nutcracker on Ice to what is undoubtedly one of London’s most popular Christmas attractions.

The Nutcracker on Ice will open on Friday, November 18, 2016 and will run every day until Monday, January 2, 2017.

Showcasing world-class skating in a stunning new indoor venue, the Winter Palace Theatre, with sumptuous projected scenery, lavish costumes, spectacular flying sequences, acrobatics, fire and illusions, The Nutcracker on Ice at Hyde Park Winter Wonderland will be a thrilling theatrical experience that will enchant all ages.

In a specially created show for Winter Wonderland, get ready to experience 60 minutes of pure joy and ice magic. As midnight strikes on Christmas Eve, a toy Nutcracker comes to life, sweeping a young girl to a world of enchantment and wonder where she meets many colourful characters including the Mouse King, the Nutcracker Prince and, of course, the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Set to Tchaikovsky’s most famous score, the cast of World, European and National Championship-level skaters will astound and mesmerise audiences with their breath-taking high-speed lifts and throws, as well as their graceful and sublime ice dancing, in the intimate setting of the frozen theatre stage.

Stephen Flint Wood, Director, PWR Events said: “We are thrilled to be celebrating Hyde Park Winter Wonderland’s 10th Anniversary. To commemorate this special year, we are adding the world-class production of the Nutcracker on Ice to our festive attractions line-up of returning and re-imagined favourites. This will truly be a year to remember.”

To create a 2000 square feet frozen stage, 12 miles of pipe-work chilled to minus 15 degrees are laid out on stage, six tonnes of crushed ice spread over the surface, and 12,000 litres of water sprayed over a period of 34 hours; while the auditorium is kept at a comfortable temperature.

Over the last decade The Imperial Ice Stars have performed to almost four million people across five continents, from Toronto to Tokyo, Cyprus to Cape Town, and Singapore to Sydney. With a world-wide following, the award-winning cast have an unrivalled reputation for awe-inspiring performances with their breath-taking and dare-devil moves on the ice. Their previous world tours (Sleeping Beauty on Ice, Swan Lake on Ice, Cinderella on Ice and The Nutcracker on Ice) have been greeted with nightly standing ovations and five-star reviews.

As well as The Nutcracker on Ice, Hyde Park Winter Wonderland will also host many new and returning attractions, including: the UK’s largest outdoor ice rink, The Magical Ice Kingdom – An Arctic Adventure, Zippos Christmas Circus, Cirque Berserk, The Sooty Christmas Show, the Giant Observation Wheel as well a many thrilling fairground rides, 200 chalets in the Angels and Fairies Christmas Market and food and drink throughout the site. Tickets are on sale now.

The Nutcracker on Ice at Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is a PWR Events, The Royal Parks and Lunchbox Theatrical Productions presentation.

For a sneak preview visit www.youtube.com/.

Tickets: From £11.95 (children), £15.95 (adults) – available online at www.hydeparkwinterwonderland.com/.

Times: The show is 1 hour long starting at 2pm, 4pm, 5.30pm and 7pm. There will also be performances at 12.30 and 8.30pm on selected days. Check website for details.

Royal Academy of Arts - 2017 Exhibition Programme

Season preview

IN FEBRUARY 2017, to commemorate the centenary of the Russian Revolution, the Royal Academy of Arts will present Revolution: Russian Art 1917 – 1932. This landmark exhibition will focus on a momentous period in Russian history between 1917, the year of the October Revolution, and 1932 when Stalin began his violent suppression of the Avant-Garde.

The exhibition will comprise paintings with photography, sculpture, film, posters and porcelain by Avant-Garde artists, such as Chagall, Kandinsky, Malevich and Tatlin alongside the Socialist Realism of Brodsky, Deineka, Mukhina and Samokhvalov, amongst others.

It will present this unique period in the history of Russian art, when for fifteen years, barriers were opened and the possibilities for building a new proletarian art for the new Soviet State were extensive.

With over 200 works, the exhibition will include loans from the State Russian Museum in St Petersburg and the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow as well as some of the most significant international private collections. Many of the works have never been seen in the UK before.

OTHER EXHIBITIONS

America after the Fall: Painting in the 1930s – in The Sackler Wing of Galleries from February 25 to June 4, 2017.

Following the devastating impact of the Great Depression, brought about by the Wall Street Crash, America entered the 1930s in flux; not even art was immune to the major challenges facing the nation. During this period, artists sought to capture those changes as mass urbanisation, industrialisation and immigration propelled the country towards becoming, in the words of James Truslow Adams, ‘the land of opportunity’.

From the depictions of the farmland of the mid-West to representations of life in the city, the exhibition will showcase 45 iconic works from the period, drawn from collections across the USA, many of which have rarely been seen together. Works by Thomas Hart Benton, Jackson Pollock, Edward Hopper, Georgia O’Keefe and Philip Guston will feature alongside Grant Wood’s iconic painting American Gothic, 1930 (Art Institute of Chicago), which will be exhibited outside North America for the very first time.

The exhibition has been organised by the Art Institute of Chicago in collaboration with the Royal Academy of Arts, London and Établissement public du musée d’Orsay et du musée de l’Orangerie, Paris.

The London Original Print Fair 2017 – in the Main Galleries from May 4 to May 7.

As the world’s longest running specialist fair dedicated to prints, The London Original Print Fair 2017 will welcome exhibitors from around the world, covering all periods of printmaking from the early woodcuts of Dürer and his contemporaries to the graphic work of artists working today such as Royal Academicians Grayson Perry, Christopher Le Brun, Emma Stibbon, Eileen Cooper and Tracey Emin.

Summer Exhibition 2017 – in the Main Galleries from June 12 to August 20.

The Royal Academy’s annual Summer Exhibition is the world’s largest open submission contemporary art show. Now in its 249th year, it provides a unique platform for emerging and established artists to showcase their works to an international audience, comprising a range of media from painting to printmaking, photography, sculpture, architecture and film. The Summer Exhibition attracts a high volume of entrants annually, with 12,000 entries received in 2016.

Matisse in the Studio – in The Sackler Wing of Galleries from August 5 to November 12, 2017.

Matisse in the Studio is the first exhibition to consider how Henri Matisse’s personal collection of treasured objects were both subject matter and point of origin for his work. Drawn from the far corners of South East Asia, Africa, North Africa, China and Europe amongst other destinations, Matisse’s eclectic collection includes a Buddhist statue from Thailand, Bamana figures from Mali and textiles from North Africa.

These objects offered Matisse a point of departure for his work, which he continuously returned to throughout his career and reconceived in different guises according to the pictorial environment into which these objects were placed. The exhibition will feature over 65 of Matisse’s paintings, sculptures and drawings alongside significant objects from his collection, to reveal the working processes by which these objects were transformed in his oeuvre.

This exhibition has been organised by the Royal Academy of Arts and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Jasper Johns – in the Main Galleries from September 23 to December 10, 2017.

Jasper Johns is regarded as one of the most important artists of the twentieth century, and has remained central to American contemporary art since his arrival in New York in the 1950s. At the forefront of a generation of artists who were responding to the dominance of Abstract Expressionism, including Robert Rauschenburg and Mark Rothko, Johns established a new vocabulary in painting. His treatment of iconography and appropriation of objects and symbols, such as his iconic flag and target works, made the familiar unfamiliar.

The exhibition aims to bring together the artist’s paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings. From his innovations in sculpture to his use of collage in paintings, the exhibition will give focus to different chapters of Johns’ career.

Dalí/Duchamp – in Galleries 1, 2 and Weston Rooms from October 7, 2017 to January 7, 2018.

Marcel Duchamp (1887–1968) and Salvador Dalí (1904–1989) are usually seen as opposites in almost every respect, yet in fact they shared attitudes to art and life that are manifested in their respective oeuvres on many levels.

Taking their friendship as its starting point, this exhibition will demonstrate the aesthetic, philosophical and personal links between them, giving a fresh view of two of the twentieth century’s most famous artists. A focused selection of approximately 60 paintings, sculptures, readymades, photographs, drawings and films will bring to life the myriad of connections between the works of these two very different, yet equally humorous, creative and intelligent minds.

The exhibition has been organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London, and The Dalí Museum, St Petersburg, Florida, in collaboration with the Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation and the Association Marcel Duchamp.

Also at the Royal Academy of Arts: David Hockney RA: 82 Portraits and 1 Still Life (until Sunday, October 2, 2016) and Intrigue: James Ensor by Luc Tuymans (October 29, 2016 to January 29, 2017).

Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BD

Tel: 020 7300 8090

Website: www.royalacademy.org.uk/

Stuart Brisley: From the Georgiana Collection - Hales London

Stuart Brisley, Georgiana Collection, 1979/2016.

Exhibition preview

HALES has announced Stuart Brisley’s first solo exhibition with the gallery. Entitled From The Georgiana Collection, it will be on display from September 16 to October 29, 2016.

Across Brisley’s ground-breaking career, which has encompassed painting, sculpture, site-specific installation, sound, photography, writing, film and performance, he has remained committed to making work that questions existing social and political structures.

In the late 1960s, he pioneered the development of performance as an art form with the potential to create a new participatory and engaged artist-audience relationship, one which could activate the viewer. For Brisley, contemporary performance, with its utopian democratic foundations, can ‘point to political views which challenge the interest of those who regulate the institutions of society in their own image’ (Stuart Brisley, Being and Doing, 1984, 16mm film).

This exhibition presents key works from the eponymous Georgiana Collection, spanning from 1979-86 (the initial period during which Brisley developed the Collection), 1988-91 (a second phase) to the present day. This significant body of sculptural and photographic work is a powerful, focused exploration of the experiences and ideas which have preoccupied Brisley throughout his career.

The Georgiana Collection is a fictitious institution whose name is derived from Georgiana Street in north-west London, where Brisley lived between 1978 and 1986. This specific location was, at the time, also a site of a hostel for the homeless, and a waste ground on which these homeless people would often congregate during the day.

Moving beyond performance, the works in the collection act as permanent records of the marginal existences Brisley has encountered whilst living in specific areas of London, from Georgiana Street to Brick Lane, where Brisley lived between 1987 and 2008. Through this fictional institutional collection, Brisley has sought to propose an alternative to the authority of institutions.

In each of the works in this exhibition, institutional attempts to fix meaning and impose fixed structures are in some way frustrated. In particular, the boundaries between inside and outside – of urban space, of community, and of the individual – are deconstructed and made permeable.

The photographs taken by Brisley (initially on Georgiana Street, before moving to Brick Lane) are reflections of the artist’s fractured perspective, both resident and outsider-immersed and engaged in his social surroundings and yet afforded a sense of distance and creative control through the camera’s lens.

As through a spyhole, they depict an officially ‘public’ space overflowing with traces of the traditionally ‘private’ or domestic: folded trousers hanging on a laundry line, pairs of shoes, piles of furniture, detritus. For the homeless community living between hostel and street, society’s rigid distinctions between public and private territory serve only to marginalise and degrade their existences.

These objects serve as traces or remnants of human presence and activity, discovered and ‘collected’ in Brisley’s photographs. They enter the collection also in three-dimensional form through their incorporation in sculptural constructions such as the iconic work Against the Wall (1985-86).

First exhibited in Brisley’s 1986 Georgiana Collection show, which travelled to the Serpentine Gallery in 1987, the work is composed of a set of wooden buttresses – external structural supports inverted and brought into the gallery space – under which piles of clothing can be seen by the viewer. The discarded clothes evoke the human bodies that once wore them, people sheltering beneath an open structure, an inverted support.

Constantly testing the boundaries of his ideas and their expression, for this exhibition Brisley has added a significant new work to the Georgiana Collection: The Procrustean Bed (2016). Half-protruding from the wall (once again bringing the inside out), the metal frame of a Victorian bed evokes the Ancient Greek myth of the metalsmith Procrustes (otherwise known as Damastes).

Procrustes would ambush pilgrims coming or going from a sacred ritual site and then either stretch their bodies out or amputate them in order to fit onto his iron bed. The bed frame is set against a backdrop of six metal plates, on which hand-drawn laser-cut biomorphic shapes are progressively stretched, straightened and distorted. Procrustes functions as a symbol of the forced establishment of an arbitrary system. Within the context of the Georgiana Collection, with its continuous collapse of clear order, the myth of Procrustes assumes a renewed contemporary relevance.

Simultaneously rooted in social reality and born from Brisley’s own ideas and fictional constructions, the works in From The Georgiana Collection are porous and polyvalent in their meanings. Ultimately, they await activation through the viewer’s own engagement, in order to challenge the status quo and imagine new possibilities.

Image: Stuart Brisley, Georgiana Collection, 1979/2016.

Times: Wednesday to Saturday from 10am – 6pm, or by appointment.

Hales London, 7 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA

Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7033 1938

Website: www.halesgallery.com/

Florian Heinke Exhibition at Charlie Smith London

Exhibition preview

CHARLIE Smith London is presenting Florian Heinke’s first solo exhibition in London. Entitled Alles Wird Gut, it will be on display from Friday, September 9 to Saturday, October 8, 2016.

Heinke is known for his paintings that alternate between political polemics and transcendental beauty. Combining text and image only in black acrylic on unprimed canvas, Heinke’s methods are unique and highly impactful.

Schooled initially on the streets of Frankfurt, Heinke discovered studio painting after being arrested for graffiti writing:

“Once I got arrested and they put me into a programme in a workshop. They offered me an alternative punishment: to work in their painting studio. I did my first canvas there with brushes and colour. Graffiti was just the valve to show my rage, incomprehension and sadness.”

Heinke went on to study at Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz before untertaking his Masters at the renowned Städelschule. Since then he has gone on to become one of Germany’s most vibrant young painters, exhibiting globally and being placed in prominent private collections, including that of Michael and Susan Hort in New York.

Despite retiring his spray cans at an early stage, elements of street semiotics continue to endure. The use of text in both German and English; an absorption of advertising techniques; and a clash of imagery derived from various sources coalesce to reference high, low and mass culture.

Alles Wird Gut – translated as ‘Everything will be fine’ – will present a typically Heinkian worldview. Smattered with irony, poetry, longing, derision, optimism and fury, the exhibition will embody Heinke’s ongoing notion of ‘Paradise Overdosed’, traversing contemporary and modern politics; celebrity; glamour; greed; beauty and decay.

Image: Florian Heinke, ‘Kein Gift auf meine Blume’, Acrylic on unprimed canvas, 100 × 80cm.

Gallery Hours: Wednesday to Saturday from 11am to 6pm or by appointment.

Charlie Smith London, 2nd Floor, 336 Old Street, London, EC1V 9DR

Website: charliesmithlondon.com/