LAF Recommends | May Art Journal
If you’re hoping to fill your bank holiday weekends with culture this May, there are a host of exciting exhibitions to look forward to. From modern masterpieces to innovative contemporary installations, this line-up of unmissable shows has something for the avid collector and casual gallery-goer alike. Continue reading for our top picks this month.
LONDON CRAFT WEEK
8 - 14 MAY
This annual event is a tribute to the outstanding creativity of makers from the UK and across the globe. It unites an international selection of over 750 established and up-and-coming craftspeople, designers, galleries and brands, selected for their vision and substance rather than price or reputation. Make sure to visit one of the many exhibitions and talks during the week to experience the ‘magical combination of imagination, individuality, passion and skill found in the best-made of things’ – (Guy Salter, Chairman).
UNTIL 4 JUNE
Visit The Beams in Woolwich to experience art at the limits of light, sound and space. This major immersive exhibition explores the hidden complexities that shape our existence. Featuring work by a global line-up of contemporary artists including 404.zero, James Clar, Robert Henke, Kimchi and Chips with Rosa Menkman, Matthew Schreiber, S E T U P and UCLA Arts Conditional Studio, the exhibition uses digital technology and large-scale installation to transform the spaces of The Beams.
SHAPING THE FUTURE: NEW ARRIVALS FROM CHAGALL TO RIBEIRO
BEN URI GALLERY AND MUSEUM
UNTIL 2 JUNE
LAF23 Museum Partner Ben Uri Gallery and Museum is proud to present Shaping the Future, an eclectic exhibition showcasing recent acquisitions and extended loans added to its collection since 2019. This noteworthy selection of paintings, drawings, sculpture and lithographs marks the Ben Uri Research Unit’s ongoing focus on the contribution of Jewish and Immigrant artists on British visual culture since 1900.
UNTIL 18 JUNE
Visual Arts Organisation Firstsite in Colchester presents BIG WOMEN, an exhibition celebrating the creative achievements of women in art. Curated by prominent contemporary artist Sarah Lucas, this unmissable exhibition showcases the work of 20+ high-profile female artists including Maggi Hambling, Renata Adela, Yoko Brown and Vanessa Fristedt to name just a few. Expect painting, sculpture, film, fashion and more exploring the questions and themes relating to womanhood, such as societal expectations surrounding age, beauty, fashion and identity.
‘So much emphasis in our culture is on youth. When the media wants to arouse our sympathy it’s all about children. The fashion and advertising media concentrates on young female beauty. The older woman is often overlooked, irrelevant, without currency. We live in an increasingly ageist society and this affects women disproportionately.
I see BIG WOMEN as both an endorsement and a celebration of women’s achievement in the creative field. It aspires to be thought provoking, funny, serious, attractive and fun. God knows we need it in these times dominated by male aggression, politicking, greed, war and pig-headedness.’
– Sarah Lucas
A LIFE PAINTING, MARO GORKY
LONG & RYLE
UNTIL 17 MAY
‘There are several reasons to unfurl the banners in celebration of this show of Maro Gorky’s work. It couldn’t be more timely, coinciding as it does with a significant birthday, itself an opportunity to stand back and take in the glorious view of her lifetime in painting.’
– Cressida Connolly
Long & Ryle is excited to present ‘A Life Painting,’ the first retrospective of Gorky’s work, from April 19 to May 19, 2023. The exhibition serves as a celebration of the artist’s life and work, coinciding with her 80th birthday. The exhibition will showcase a variety of paintings, including oils, watercolours, and works on paper, created throughout her life.
LARRY ACHIAMPONG: AND I SAW A NEW HEAVEN
4 MAY - 17 JUNE
In Larry Achiampong’s second solo show at Copperfield London, he draws on the unlikely combination of HBO TV, video games and Christianity. The title of the exhibition, taken from dialogues in the game-turned-series The Last of Us and ultimately from the Bible, encompasses these varied references. The artist highlights the problematic nature of cultural hierarchy that positions the church as high culture and gaming as low culture, breaking down this distinction by bringing real game play for visitors into direct dialogue with his collaged paintings.
‘Video games have had huge influence on my art work and the reality of their sophistication and cultural referencing is ignored by the rest of the creative sphere. It’s time for video games to take their place as context in the gallery while I work on my ultimate goal; a playable artwork. At its core gaming is storytelling, world building, fantasy, exploration and human culture in one’
– Larry Achiampong
FOR NOTHING IS SIMPLY ONE THING - CANOPY COLLECTIONS
GALLERY 11 AT CROMWELL PLACE
9 - 14 MAY
Cromwell Place will undoubtedly be filled with exciting exhibitions during London Craft Week this month, and amongst them Canopy Collections presents a group show titled ‘For Nothing is Simply One Thing’. The gallery will showcase the work of international artists who celebrate traditional craft techniques, highlighting the ongoing conversation between fine art and the decorative arts with a range of media including sculptural ceramics, glass pieces, textured paintings and works on paper.
Featured artists: Sam Herman, Dan Rees, James William Murray, Benedikte Klüver, William Cobbing, Marianne Thoemer, Penelope Clayden
HAMPTON COURT PALACE ARTISAN FAYRE
12 - 14 MAY
The Artisan Fayre at Hampton Court Palace, 12-14 May offers a special day out for everyone; visit to discover independent artisan makers, street food stalls, workshops, with Free entry to the palace included.
Master a new craft in a workshop; choose from lumen printing, Indian Block Printing or make your own earrings.
RETURNING TO THE BUSINESS DESIGN CENTRE, LAUNCHING YOUR NEW ART YEAR
19 - 23 JANUARY 2022
Reconnect with leading galleries from around the world this January and enjoy an outstanding celebration of Modern and Contemporary Art.
An opportunity for you to discover and engage with iconic modernist names, through to contemporary and emerging artists.
Browse over 100 participating galleries through the button below.
JENNA BURLINGHAM GALLERY
'WINTER' EXHIBITION AT ROPE HOUSE
IVON HITCHENS, WINIFRED NICHOLSON, MARY POTTER, WILLIAM NICHOLSON, KEITH VAUGHAN, PRUNELLA CLOUGH, JOHN PIPER, BEN NICHOLSON, BRYAN WYNTER, WILLIAM SCOTT AND PATRICK HERON, AMONG OTHERS.
1 OCTOBER - 24 NOVEMBER
The gallery is delighted announce the opening of their new gallery in Hampshire with an inaugural ‘Winter’ exhibition.
Jenna Burlingham Gallery has expanded with a move to a much larger building, Rope House, on the same street as their original space in Kingsclere. This was once a 19th-century rope merchant’s home and workshop and now has the feeling of an informal townhouse. With open galleries at ground level and drawing rooms upstairs, paintings, prints, sculptures and ceramics are displayed throughout as part of interior settings.
SOGEN CHIBA, REIKO TSUNASHIMA AND MIZUHO KOYAMA
8 - 30 OCTOBER
Sumi, or Japanese ink, has been used for Oriental calligraphic works and paintings for a long time. The need for works in Sumi, an art form backed by a long unbroken history, remains strong.
In contemporary art, which is filled with an indiscriminate mix of materials and representation techniques, works produced based on Sumi are specifically referred to as “Sumi_ism” and at #7 exhibition a collection of works from Reiko Tsunashima and Sogen Chiba, Mizuho Koyama are displayed from this field.
STUCK ON DAWN
17 JULY - 26 AUGUST
Kerlin Gallery are delighted to present ‘Stuck on dawn,’ Marcel Vidal’s first solo exhibition at the gallery.
Celebrated for his diverse practice and immersive sculptural installations, the exhibition brings together three series of work in Marcel Vidal’s first exhibition dedicated exclusively to painting.
A VERY SPECIAL PLACE: IKON IN THE 1990s
18 JUNE – 30 AUGUST
A review of Ikon’s artistic programme in the 1990s, presenting work by 40 artists who showed during this period. With Elizabeth Macgregor as Director, Ikon’s outlook was increasingly international, whilst also showing an eclectic mix of British artists including Basil Beattie, Permindar Kaur, Keith Piper, Yinka Shonibare, Georgina Starr and Mark Wallinger.
Ahead of International Women’s Day on 8 March 2023, this special edition of LAF Recommends will highlight exhibitions, events and talks which explore the diverse experiences and perspectives of women and honour their achievements and contribution to art and culture.