Staff writer Jess Clarke goes through the best art exhibitions you can see in London during the remainder of 2022 and the start of 2023.
Looking to get out from under the glaring library lights? Take a trip to one of the exhibitions listed below for some cultural relief.
Bill Brandt: Inside the Mirror
Visit the Tate Britain to see original photographs and print copies from across Bill Brandt’s career. The British photographer was influential during the mid-20th century as photography was starting to become an accepted art form, and he is known for his experimental work that found beauty in the mundane. His works involved landscapes, portraits, and nudes, and he was 100% dedicated to setting up the perfect composition, which is obvious in his photos. This exhibition is a great insight into the photography boom of the mid-20th century and can be enjoyed by photography newbies, and those who know their stuff, alike.
‘Bill Brandt: Inside the Mirror’ is showing at the Tate Britain until 15 January 2023
Soheila Sokhanvari: Rebel Rebel
This relevant and moving exhibition at the Barbican provides an enlightening perspective on pre-revolutionary Iran. Using the painting tradition of egg tempera on calf vellum, Sokhanvari’s work focuses on the lives of 28 women who were silenced by the 1979 religious reforms, through exile and imprisonment. Stars of stage and film, these women are feminist icons, and Sokhanvari’s immersive exhibition honours that. This exhibition could not have come at a more poignant time and is a rich insight into Iranian womanhood pre-1979. Featuring murals and music alongside the paintings themselves, this is not one to miss.
“Soheila Sokhanvari: Rebel Rebel” is showing at the Barbican until 26 February 2023
The New Black Vanguard
Lovers of fashion and art must make a visit to this long-awaited exhibition which, after travelling all over the world, has finally landed at the Saatchi gallery. Featuring the works of 15 black photographers, the exhibition was curated by US writer and critic Antwaun Sargent, a champion of black art and fashion. This most recent collection celebrates black creativity, both behind and in front of the camera, and shows a new wave of representation in fashion, art, and photography. There is even a Burberry-sponsored section, “The New Wave II”, where the iconic fashion house has paired with creatives to support the exhibition. This vibrant and groundbreaking exhibition is a must-see.
“The New Black Vanguard: Photography between Art and Fashion” is showing at the Saatchi Gallery until 22 January 2023
£5 for students with a valid ID
When Flowers Dream
From the artist Tanya Schultz, a.k.a Pip & Pop, comes this playful new installation at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art in Kew Gardens. Included in the Kew Gardens entry ticket, this fun exhibition displays artwork made from sugar, sweets, and an assortment of other materials.
“When Flowers Dream” is showing in the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art in Kew Gardens until 5 March 2023
£6 for a Kew Gardens entry ticket (incl. the exhibition) for students with a valid ID
Weird Sensation Feels Good: The World of ASMR
Anyone who’s been near TikTok in the last few years will have undoubtedly come across an ASMR video or two. ASMR stands for “autonomous sensory meridian response” and is a phenomenon where certain stimuli (like sounds or sights) cause a tingle up the spine and a state of relaxation. The Design Museum is the first to explore the concept of ASMR, in an immersive exhibition like no other. Prepare to have a physical reaction as you are introduced into the world of ASMR. Whether you love it or hate it, I guarantee it’ll be like no other exhibition you’ve been to before.
“Weird Sensation Feels Good: The World of ASMR” at the Design Museum is running until 10 April 2023
£7.20/£9.75 for students with a valid ID (weekday/weekend)
Hallyu! The Korean Wave
‘Hallyu’ is the South Korean pop culture phenomenon that the V&A is exploring in its latest exhibition. The exhibition covers all things pop culture, including cinema, music, beauty, fashion, and tech, and examines the global reach of the Korean Wave. Beyond the dazzling world of K-culture, the exhibition also provides a thorough and well-researched introduction into South Korean history. Once again the V&A does not disappoint, and it’s definitely worth the heavier price tag.
“Hallyu! The Korean Wave” is showing at the V&A until 25 June 2023
£13 for students and those under 26
Hieroglyphs: Unlocking Ancient Egypt
The Rosetta Stone has been exhibited at the British Museum for over 200 years and was the key to unlocking the magic of hieroglyphics. 2022 marks the 200th anniversary of this deciphering, and the British Museum has gone above and beyond to provide insight into Ancient Egypt. Perhaps the ‘heaviest’ of the exhibitions on this list, be prepared to do a lot of reading. However, there are plenty of ornate semi-pictorial papyrus prints to provide some light relief. This is definitely an exhibition for those interested in the fascinating world of Ancient Egypt.
“Hieroglyphs: Unlocking Ancient Egypt” is showing at the V&A until 19 February 2023
£16/£18 for students with a valid ID (weekday/weekend)
2-for-1 tickets on Fridays
Ones To Watch In Late 2023:
DIVA at the V&A
Celebrating iconic performers, this exhibition is set to open on 24 June 2023.
Skateboard at the Design Museum
Charting the evolution of skateboards from the 1950s to now, this exhibition opens on 20 October 2023.
Women in Revolt! at the Tate Britain
A one-of-a-kind exhibition exploring the artwork of over 100 women working in the UK from 1970 to 1990, Women in Revolt! opens on 8 November 2023.