2012 was a great year for art aficionados in London. We really struggled in putting together our top 10 exhibitions of the year. But what does 2013 hold in store? We’ve put together a list of exhibitions that we’re looking forward to in the new year.
Manet – Portraying Life @ Royal Academy
Manet was hugely important as one of the founders of the Impressionist movement, yet suffers from confusion with the similar sounding Monet by more casual gallery visitors. This exhibition will feature over 50 works with a focus on his portraits and how they captured daily life in Paris.
When: 26 January-14 April
Light Show @ Hayward Gallery
Light has been used to create some amazing artworks, notably Anthony McCall’s Vertical Works at the Ambika P3 last year. Expect perceptions to be altered and mirrors aplenty in what promises to be an illuminating show.
When: 30 January-28 April
Murillo and Justino de Neve @ Dulwich Picture Gallery
Part of the gallery will be converted to resemble the 17th century church in Seville which housed a Murillo altarpiece. This plus 30 more of his works should be enough to whet the appetites of all fans of Baroque art.
When: 6 February-19 May
Ice Age Art @ British Museum
We all know that art has been a part of humanity for thousands of years, and most people have heard of the famous cave paintings in Lascaux. But most of us know very little about other examples of prehistoric art. The British Museum aims to change that with sculptures, drawings and portraits from 10,000 to 40,000 years ago.
When: 7 February-26 May
The Bride and the Bachelors @ Barbican Art Gallery
This exhibition features artists who controversially pushed the boundaries of what can be considered art, such as Marcel Duchamp with his Urinal and John Cage with his 4 minutes and 33 seconds of nothing being played. This one’s almost guaranteed to be a hit and miss affair but should offer lots of food for thought to the inquisitive mind.
When: 14 February-9 June
Lichtenstein @ Tate Modern
Alongside Warhol, Lichtenstein’s works are the best remembered from the Pop Art movement. His work is familiar to people who haven’t even heard of the artist, and his style continues to be emulated in advertising today. This retrospective will show us that he was no one-trick-pony, and contains over 125 works.
When: 21 February-27 May
Barocci: Brilliance and Grace @ National Gallery
Barocci was yet another extremely talented Italian renaissance painter, yet many may not have heard of him — mainly because only one of his major works is in the UK. The National Gallery is looking to change this with an exhibition of his majestic altarpieces.
When: 27 February-19 May
George Bellows @ Royal Academy
Bellows was an American realist best known for his visceral paintings of boxing matches. Though he died young at 42, he created hundreds of works in his prolific career and 90 of them will be on display at this exhibition.
When: 16 March-9 June
Lowry and the Painting of Modern Life @ Tate Britain
Nobody captured the industrial North of England quite like Lowry with his dull-coloured landscapes populated by his ‘matchstick men’. This show looks at how he was influenced by French painting and how this led to the development of his unique style.
When: 25 June-20 October
Whistler in London @ Dulwich Picture Gallery
Many a famous painter has made London their muse at some point in their career, including Monet, Turner and Canaletto. Whistler may be best known for the painting of his mother (itself created in his London studio) but he spent much of his time painting London scenes. Many of these works will be on display in this exhibition.
When: 16 October-12 January 2014
We’re certain we’ll hear of more great art exhibitions as the year progresses but if there are any we’ve missed, let us know in the comments.