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Fast Eddy's Current Top Six London Exhibitions

Another Life Changing Experience

By: Edward Rubin - 01/09/2014

Click to Enlarge
Daumier is the subject of one of Rubin’s current six best British shows.
Daumier is the subject of one of Rubin’s current six best British shows.

Every time I go abroad and return stateside to New York City my friends want to know what I did, what I saw etc.

Having experienced life changes and a number of epiphanies - as is my DNA pattern - and the past being past, I am often at a loss, unless I am writing about them, to revisit my experiences.

For the past week or so I have been devouring art, in and around London, Wakefield, and Leeds. Below are just a few - the creme de la creme - of the exhibitions that I visited.

For those that are interested in art and its history the following exhibitions might interest you.

For those for whom art is a minor, just a passing fancy, if not annoying experience, it might be an overkill of information.

For me, these exhibitions were life changing, meaning I had to rearrange my internals to accommodate the new information.

The 6 exhibitions listed below - with attached short stories and some images - they are those that I care enough about to share. Point of fact they all were stellar exhibitions.

1. Daumier 1808-1879 Visions of Paris at The Royal Academy
2. Pearls at the Victoria & Albert
3. Art and Life at the Leeds Gallery
4. Jameel Prize # 3 at the Victoria and Albert
5.  Mira Schendel (1919-1988) Brazilian Artist
6. Paul Klee Making Visible at the Tate Modern - http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/ey-exhibition-paul-klee-making-visible

I had trouble posting Klee but above link will take you to exhibition info.

Daumier (1808-1879): Visions of Paris

26 October 2013—26 January 2014

In The Sackler Wing of Galleries, Burlington House

2009-2013 Season supported by

"Unmissable" - The Guardian
"An exciting and astonishing exhibition, an aesthetic boxer’s blow to the heart" - London Evening Standard

A staunch believer in the Republican cause, a freethinker and chronicler of everyday life in turbulent 19th century Paris, Honoré Daumier lived during a pivotal time in France’s history. 'Visions of Paris' sets out to explore his legacy through 130 works, many of which have never been seen in the UK before, with a concentration on paintings, drawings, watercolours and sculptures.

Daumier's work has been admired by artists both of his time such as Degas and Delacroix as well as those who followed; from Picasso and Francis Bacon to Paula Rego and Quentin Blake. Daumier made his living as a caricaturist in newspapers, observing and ridiculing the conceits of bourgeois society, reserving special criticism for dishonest politicians and lawyers; even earning himself a spell in jail for his depiction of King Louis Philippe as Gargantua.

Click here to view images from the exhibition

Broadly chronological, this exhibition is the first to go beyond Daumier’s lithographs in the UK since 1961. Spanning the decades from 1830 to 1879 it will look at the range of his output, from disturbing images of fugitives from the cholera epidemics and deeply felt images of the laundresses and street entertainers living in his neighbourhood to his take on the role of spectators and collectors in judging art. In its variety and breadth, this exhibition will give visitors visions of Paris to live long in the memory.

Pearls: About the Exhibition

Portrait of Jeanne de Marigny, attributed to Charles (1604-92) and Henri Beaubrun (1603-77), Paris, about 1650-60, oil on canvas. Museum no. 566-1882, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

21 September 2013 – 19 January 2014

V&A and Qatar Museums Authority exhibition

Introduction

Pearls are a worldwide phenomenon going back millennia. Fascination for these jewels of the sea transcends time and borders. Natural pearls have always been objects of desire due to their rarity and beauty. Myths and legends surrounded them, chiefly to explain the mystery of their formation. Goldsmiths, jewellers and painters exploited their symbolic associations, which ranged from seductiveness to purity, from harbingers of good luck in marriage to messengers of mourning.

Wonders of nature

Shells have been revered as miraculous creations of nature and appreciated for their decorative character. Global exploration led to the enthusiastic collection of shells as rare treasures of exotic lands often displayed in cabinets of curiosities to delight and impress. Later the natural world grew increasingly scientific, and shells were recorded in richly illustrated volumes.

In recent years, the focus of scientific scrutiny has been the pearl itself and its formation. X-ray images have revealed how natural saltwater pearls are formed by the intrusion of a parasite such as a worm or piece of sponge into the shell’s mantle, the organ which produces nacre (mother-of-pearl). The parasite displaces cells to form a cyst, over which the nacre grows.

In principle any mollusc with a shell can create a pearl, from the giant clam to the land snail. The variety of colours and shapes of pearls is unimaginable, ranging from the exotic pink conch pearl, the brown and black pearl, the blue-green abalone pearl and the Melo pearl with its orange hues.

Pearl fishing in the Gulf

Natural oyster pearls were fished in the Gulf from as early as the first millennium BC until the decline of the trade by the mid 20th century. The procedure of harvesting oysters has remained unchanged over centuries. The diver’s equipment was basic, a loin cloth, nose clip of tortoiseshell or wood and a leather sheath to hold the oysters.

The diver descended with two ropes: one attached to a net for collecting the oysters (about twelve per dive), the second attached to a stone weighing five to seven kilograms to speed up descent, with a loop for the diver’s foot. When he was ready, the puller attentive to his signals would let the two ropes run free. Within seconds the diver would reach the bottom, sometimes as deep as 22 metres, and let go of the rope carrying the weight.

Little do the magnificent necklaces of natural Gulf pearls, arranged according to scale and lustre, reveal the effort it takes to assemble such masterpieces. 2000 oyster shells need to be opened before finding a single beautiful pearl.

Click here for a map of pearl fishing in the Gulf

Pearl trading in the Gulf

The trade in pearls played an important role for countries along the coast from Saudi Arabia to Dubai, especially Bahrain and Qatar. Seafaring Arab merchants travelled across the Indian Ocean as early as the seventh century, stopping at various ports along the coasts of India and trading with pearls. Merchants from China travelled to India to acquire the highly prized natural pearls from the Gulf, while at the same time Arab merchants expanded their trade network to South East Asia.

By the early 19th century the Gulf was the major global supplier of natural pearls. Demand reached unprecedented heights as high quality ‘oriental’ pearls were much sought after by the great jewellery houses of Europe. The golden age of Gulf pearls was between 1850 and 1930. Today the natural pearl has become a rare gem.

Pearls and pearl necklaces from the Arabian Gulf

Pearl jewellery through the ages

Across the Roman Empire jewels with pearls were a desirable and expensive luxury, a symbol of wealth and status. In medieval Europe pearls appear as symbols of authority on regalia, and as attributes of Christ and the Virgin Mary in jewellery, symbolizing purity and chastity. By the Renaissance, portraits show that nobles and affluent merchants were adorned with pearls, the symbolism became increasingly secular.

By the 17th and 18th centuries pearls had become lavish adornments, often worn in a seductive manner. They were also demonstrations of high social rank. By the early 19th century pearls embellished more intimate or ‘sentimental’ jewellery to convey personal messages celebrating love or expressing grief.

The opulence and ceremony enjoyed by the courts of Europe in the 19th century was favourable for pearls, necklaces of all lengths were fashionable, from long ropes to chokers.

In Paris, jewellers working in the Art Nouveau style were fascinated by the extraordinary shaped pearls and transformed them into breathtaking interpretations of nature.

In the ‘Roaring Twenties’ urban life changed fashions, women wore short sleeveless slim-line dresses and pearl sautoirs dangled down to the waist and beyond.

 

Authority and celebrity

In the East and the West tastes in jewellery may vary but the significance of pearls remains the same, with pearls worn as symbols of power and an indicator of rank in society. They were much revered objects of desire due to the rarity of natural pearls.

Rulers wore crowns adorned with pearls to demonstrate dynastic authority and the prosperity of their lands. In Russia, Iran, China and India, ostentatious displays of pearls formed an integral part of the regalia of ruling monarchs.

In Europe, royal and aristocratic women wore rare pearls mounted on splendid tiaras to dazzle and impress. As old social conventions were overturned, pearls adorned the necklines of ladies of fame and fortune. The screen goddesses of Hollywood movies and, more recently, fashionable, media-friendly celebrities have helped to uphold the unfailing glamour of pearls.

 

Attempts to produce pearls through human intervention go back centuries. The ancient Chinese had discovered how to create a blister pearl by inserting an object into the oyster. In the 18th century the Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus experimented in a similar way.

However, it was Kokichi Mikimoto (1858–1954) in Japan, who at the beginning of the 20th century was granted a patent for developing round cultured pearls from Akoya oysters that their industrial production began. By the 1950s cultured pearls had conquered the market and Mikimoto’s dream ‘to adorn the necks of all the women of the world with pearls’ became a reality.

Today Mikimoto is renowned for its quality control, following the founder’s philosophy of using only the very best quality pearls for jewellery. Its flagship store is still in the Ginza district of Tokyo.

South Sea pearls

Cultured pearls from the South Seas are found in countless colours. Their iridescence and hue are dependent on the type of molluscs they are grown in and where they are farmed.

The queen of all oysters, the Pinctada maxima, produces the finest South Sea pearls. These come from established farms in Burma, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and along the northern coast of Australia. The common Pinctada maxima produces white pearls, the silver-lipped variety results in pale metallic-grey tints and the gold-lipped specimen creates gems with an intense golden hue.

The Pinctada margaritifera, the black-lipped oyster from the Pacific atolls, produces the famous Tahitian pearls. These are not all black. Some are white, and the black ones take on spectacular green, blue, even aubergine, tones reminiscent of the colours of peacock feathers.

Melo and brown diamond earrings, made and designed by Hemmerle, Munich, Germany, 2001, rose gold, red gold, pave-set fancy brown diamonds, melo pearl bouton and melo pearl drop. Private Collection. Courtesy Hemmerle

Contemporary design

Jewellery design experienced great changes during the second half of the twentieth century. During the 1960s and 1970s avant-garde jewellers in Europe broke away from traditional gem-set jewellery to create abstract sculptural designs with unconventional settings for pearls. In contrast, the high-end jewellers sought a path between tradition and Modernism. From the 1980s, the emphasis for artist jewellers has been less about the value of the pearl and more about novelty of design. Searching for new ways of wearing pearls, they set them in a variety of metals, often with textured surfaces and successfully combined them with non-precious materials.

Today the range of aesthetics in pearl jewellery is boundless and the variety of pearls quite remarkable. Whether natural, cultured or imitation, pearls continue to be fashionable and are being worn by increasing numbers of women. Pearls are a symbol of femininity and timeless jewels befitting at any event or occasion.

Art and Life

18 October 2013 – 12 January 2014

A major international exhibition of work from two of the UK’s most important 20th Century painters, Ben and Winifred Nicholson, will open at Leeds Art Gallery on 18 October until 12 January 2014 before touring to Kettle’s Yard and Dulwich Picture Gallery. 

‘Art and Life’ examines their work both individually and in collaboration with friends and fellow artists Christopher Wood, Alfred Wallis, and the potter William Staite Murray.  The exhibition has been curated in collaboration with art historian and curator Jovan Nicholson, Winifred and Ben’s grandson, giving unique access and insight into the archive, history and work of the artists and will show key pieces from public and private collections in the UK as well as loans from Europe.

Focusing on the years of Ben and Winifred’s marriage from 1920 - 1931, the important relationships they had with Christopher Wood, Alfred Wallis and William Staite Murray and ‘Art and Life’ will look at how their work shaped and informed the story of 20th century modern art in this country and explores the key contribution they made to modernism and the visual culture of the mid-twentieth century.  The exhibition positions the Nicholsons’ work alongside their artistic contemporaries as well as in the context of the political and cultural history of the twentieth century, supporting their significant position in the history of British art.

Art and Life examines the artistic partnership of Ben Nicholson and Winifred Nicholson in the 1920s. Inspired by each other, the Nicholsons experimented furiously and often painted the same subject, one as a colourist the other more interested in form. Winifred wrote of her time with Ben, ‘All artists are unique and can only unite as complementaries not as similarities’.

The exhibition is accompanied by a major publication with newly commissioned texts, illustrated in full colour and produced by Philip Wilson Publishers. In the book’s principal essay Jovan Nicholson explores the way ideas flowed between the Nicholsons and Christopher Wood when they painted side by side in Cumberland and Cornwall, with particular emphasis on the meeting with Alfred Wallis in St. Ives in 1928. Art Historian, Sebastiano Barassi focuses on the Nicholsons’ visits to Paris, Italy and Switzerland in the early 1920s, and the potter Julian Stair examines the importance of William Staite Murray, one of the most successful artists at that time. All three essays draw on new research based on previously unpublished letters, photographs and other material. The majority of the items come from private collections, and many are previously unseen.

A programme of talks and events will accompany the exhibition including curator Jovan Nicholson speaking on Weds 27th November 6pm-7pm.  Regular Thursday lunchtime talks on different aspects of the exhibition and in collaboration with Leeds Art Fund include writer and curator Anne Goodchild introducing her new book ‘Dear Winifred… Christopher Wood: Letters to Winifred and Ben Nicholson, 1926-1930’ on 20 November.

A programme of activities in Artspace for families will accompany the exhibition.  All associated talks, events and activities will be advertised from this page. You can also download the exhibition guide from the documents link above.

Teachers, download the resource notes from the link above to help you make the most of a visit with your class.

Victoria and Albert Museum

About the Jameel Prize

The Jameel Prize is an international award for contemporary art and design inspired by Islamic tradition. Its aim is to explore the relationship between Islamic traditions of art, craft and design and contemporary work as part of a wider debate about Islamic culture and its role today.

The Jameel Prize at the V&A and the international touring exhibition are in partnership with Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives. The prize was conceived after the redesign and redisplay of the V&A's Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art, which opened in July 2006.

Jameel Prize background

The V&A houses one of the world's great collections of Islamic art from the Middle East. This can be seen at its best in the Museum's splendid Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art, which opened to widespread acclaim in July 2006. The Jameel Prize complements the Gallery by providing a showcase for new art and design that reflects the Islamic traditions of the past on display there.

The V&A began to collect art from the Islamic world in the 1850s, and it was the first institution in the world to do so with a purpose. The Museum's mission was to reform design, and it was thought that Islamic ideas about structuring patterns and matching decoration to shape and function could improve British design, as indeed they did. The Jameel Prize shows that this link between the Islamic art of the past and contemporary practice is still very much alive.

The role of the Jameel Prize is to give work of this kind a higher profile. Certainly, it is helping to promote art and design inspired by Islamic traditions to potential patrons. The Prize also demonstrates that artists can and do use these traditions in a way that is vividly relevant to the contemporary world.

 

How does the Jameel Prize work?

This first Jameel Prize exhibition in 2009, featuring works by the winner and the other eight finalists, was shown at the V&A from 8 July to 13 September 2009. Subsequently, the exhibition was on an international tour, travelling to venues in the Middle East and North Africa. The Jameel Prize 2011 toured Europe and the United States. Future prizes will travel to new regions of the world.

Entry for the Jameel Prize is by nomination. Nominations for the Jameel Prize were invited from a wide range of specialists with a knowledge of contemporary art and design inspired by Islamic tradition. The names of more than 200 artists and designers were put forward in this way. Submissions came from countries as diverse as the USA, Germany, Iran, Lebanon, Uzbekistan and China.

The nominated artists and designers were all invited to submit an application based on work produced in the previous five years. More than 200 artists and designers did so. An independent panel of judges then met to short-list the best submissions.

The artists and designers short-listed for the Jameel Prize are invited to show examples of their work in a special exhibition at the V&A. These are either the work for which they were short-listed or from the same series. The judges then view the exhibition, and select a winner. The Prize of £25,000 is awarded to the winner during the prize-giving ceremony.

Patron

The Patron of the Jameel Prize is the award-winning architect Zaha Hadid.

Zaha Hadid is widely recognized as one of the world’s most innovative architects who tests boundaries of architecture, urbanism and design. She was awarded the Pritzker Prize in 2004. Each of Hadid’s seminal buildings, including the Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art in Cincinnati, the BMW Central Building in Leipzig and the Nordpark Railway Stations in Innsbruck have been hailed as architecture that tranforms our vision of the future with new spatial concepts and bold, visionary forms.

 

Victoria and Albert Museum

Jameel Prize 3 - Winner Announced

Dice Kayek has won the £25,000 Jameel Prize 3 for Istanbul Contrast, a collection of garments that evoke Istanbul’s architectural and artistic heritage. The judges felt that Dice Kayek’s work demonstrates how vibrant and creative Islamic traditions continue to be today. Their translation of architectural ideas into fashion shows how Islamic traditions can still transfer from one art form to another, as they did in the past. Ece and Ayşe Ege were presented with the prize by Martin Roth, Director of the V&A and Fady Jameel, President of Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives (ALJCI) at an awards ceremony at the V&A on Tuesday 10 December.

Video: Jameel Prize 3 - Winner Announcement

View transcript of video

Jameel Prize 3: The shortlist

There were almost 270 nominations for the Jameel Prize 3 from countries as diverse as Algeria, Brazil, Kosovo, Norway and Russia. A panel of judges, chaired by V&A Director, Martin Roth, selected the shortlist of ten artists and designers. Martin Roth said:

'This, the third Jameel Prize, has continued to attract nominations from around the world, and for the first time the shortlist features work from Saudi Arabia, Azerbaijan and India. The Jameel Prize 2011 touring exhibition has also attracted a wide audience, showing in America, Spain and France to more than 20,000 visitors. We are delighted to continue our work on the Jameel Prize with Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives (ALJCI).'

The work of the shortlisted artists and designers will be shown at the V&A from 11 December 2013 until 21 April 2014. Although the shortlist is diverse, all the artists and designers are directly inspired by sources rooted in the Islamic tradition. The works on show will range from Arabic typography and calligraphy to fashion inspired by the Hagia Sofia in Istanbul and from social design and video installation to delicate and precise miniature drawings.

Read more about the Jameel Prize

About the judges

Award-winning architect Dame Zaha Hadid is Patron of the Jameel Prize. The judges are:

 

About the shortlisted artists

Faig Ahmed

View transcript of video

Faig Ahmed designs carpets as part of a diverse art practice which also includes painting, video and installation. His carpets are based on Azerbaijan’s ancient weaving traditions. They are made by hand and, for the most part, follow a conventional design. In each case, though, Ahmed reconfigures part of the pattern. In Hollow, one corner of the carpet seems to have collapsed, while in Pixelate Tradition, much of the pattern has disintegrated into pixels. By disrupting traditional forms, Ahmed shows how, ‘Ideas that have been formed for ages are being changed in moments’.

Ahmed was born in Baku, Azerbaijan, where he lives and works.

www.faigahmed.com

Nada Debs

View transcript of video

Nada Debs, a furniture and product designer, blends Middle Eastern craftsmanship with Japanese minimalism. Her Concrete Carpet combines a light-weight form of concrete with Arabic font design. The ‘carpet’ is divided into 28 panels. This structure recalls the use of tatami mats in Japan to cover interiors. Each panel features a letter of the Arabic alphabet, with one example of this letter highlighted with mother-of-pearl inlay. The font was designed for Debs by Pascal Zoghbi, also a finalist in Jameel Prize 3.

Debs was born in Japan. She lives and works in Beirut, Lebanon.

www.nadadebs.com

Mounir Fatmi

View transcript of video

In his multi-media installations, Mounir Fatmi often uses Arabic calligraphy in new ways. One traditional calligraphic convention is to arrange texts in impressive wheel-shaped compositions. In the video work Modern Times: A History of the Machine, Fatmi uses these circular compositions literally as wheels, the parts of a noisy locomotive that hurtles forward relentlessly. The work points to the dystopic world we are creating. In the Middle East, ramshackle cities grow without stopping, while prestige building projects are commissioned on an inhuman scale as displays of power.

Technologia offers a metaphor for the contemporary world in constant, erratic movement, with no end to production and consumption. The images repeat so rapidly that they cannot transmit their content – we do not get the message. The forms suggest both the circular compositions found in Arabic calligraphy and Marcel Duchamp’s Rotoreliefs, the first examples of kinetic art.

Fatmi was born in Tangier, Morocco. He lives and works there and in Paris.

www.mounirfatmi.com

Rahul Jain

View transcript of video

Textile designer Rahul Jain set up a workshop in Varanasi in India to recreate magnificent silk textiles of the past. The workshop has five drawlooms, at which local Muslim weavers work in pairs. Under Jain’s guidance, they weave silk and gold and silver thread in impressively complex techniques, such as those used to make textiles for the Mughal emperors in the 17th and 18th centuries. The Snow Leopard and The Birds of Paradise designs stay true to the pattern structure of historical textiles, but the patterns themselves have been interpreted in new ways.

Jain was born in New Delhi, where he lives and works.

Dice Kayek

View transcript of video

Dice Kayek is the Turkish fashion label established by sisters Ece and Ayşe Ege. Their collection ‘Istanbul Contrast’ evokes Istanbul’s architectural and artistic heritage. Caftan, made of hand-woven lamé brocade, refers to the luxurious robes worn by the city’s former Ottoman rulers. For Dome 2, light-weight cotton organdie was folded to echo the ribs of lead-covered domes of the city’s mosques and palaces. Hagia Sophia, a white satin coat with complex, hand-stitched embroidery and ancient glass beads, was inspired by Byzantine mosaics.

Ece and Ayşe Ege were born in Bursa, Turkey. They live and work between Istanbul and Paris.

www.dicekayek.com

Waqas Khan

View transcript of video

Waqas Khan trained in the traditional practice of miniature painting, but uses the skills he learned to create drawings on a large scale. He says, ‘The process is almost architectural, like building something slowly brick by brick’. The ‘bricks’ are dots, marks and lines, assembled with precision and delicacy into deceptively simple compositions. He also compares his work to a diary, in which ‘Each dot is like a word’.

Khan’s practice reflects aspects of Sufism, the mystic current in Islam. He works without a magnifying glass, usually at night, holding his breath while drawing and exhaling only once the ink is on the paper.

Khan was born in Akhtar Abad, Pakistan. He now lives and works in Lahore.

Laurent Mareschal

View transcript of video

Laurent Mareschal is concerned with the impermanence of our lives. He often uses Palestinian sources for his work, acknowledging the particular impermanence of Palestinian lives. His large, ephemeral, site-specific works draw on everyday materials such as spices, soap and food. With these he creates patterns based on, among other things, the decorative floor tiles in old houses. His work is deliberately fragile, and Mareschal expects his audiences to participate in transforming it – for example, by eating the food.

Mareschal was born in Dijon. He lives and works in Paris.

Nasser Al Salem

View transcript of video

The calligrapher Nasser Al Salem works in various media, not just on paper. In Kul, he exploits one of the most dramatic forms found in the Arabic script – the combination of the letters kaf and lam that spell out the word kull, meaning ‘all’. He repeats the word on a diminishing scale to create a perspective effect that suggests infinity and all-inclusiveness, complementing the literal meaning of the word. In Guide us Upon the Straight Path, Al Salem uses a new and evocative calligraphic style based on the ‘script’ of the hospital monitor to write out a believer’s prayer.

Al Salem was born in Mecca. He lives and works in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Florie Salnot

View transcript of video

Florie Salnot is a designer concerned with social issues. For her Plastic Gold project she works with women from Western Sahara. The Sahrawi women now live in refugee camps at desert sites in Algeria. Inspired by the traditional jewellery worn by these women, Salnot has devised a craft they can practise despite their limited resources. She uses only hot sand, simple tools and spray paint to transform discarded plastic bottles into necklaces and bracelets.

The necklaces on display are Salnot’s own designs, based on Sahrawi originals made of leather and metal.

Salnot was born in France. She now works between Hamburg, London and Paris.

Plastic Gold was supported by London-based Sandblast charity, promoting Saharawi refugee voices through the arts.

Pascal Zoghbi

View transcript of video

Pascal Zoghbi is a typographer who specialises in Arabic fonts. Until recently, the range of fonts available for printing in Arabic was very small, but font design is now a growing field. The challenge is to devise fonts that stay faithful to the conventions of the Arabic script while matching contemporary needs. In 29LT Fonts Collection, Zoghbi illustrates this process with each letter of the Arabic alphabet, linking historical forms to his own typography.

Zoghbi’s design studio, 29Letters, has created new typographical styles for newspapers, magazines, architecture, wayfinding and software. They also created the font Nada Debs used for Concrete Carpet (in the centre of the room).

Zoghbi lives and works in Beirut, Lebanon.

Daumier (1808-1879): Visions of Paris

26 October 2013—26 January 2014

In The Sackler Wing of Galleries, Burlington House

2009-2013 Season supported by

"Unmissable" - The Guardian
"An exciting and astonishing exhibition, an aesthetic boxer’s blow to the heart" - London Evening Standard

A staunch believer in the Republican cause, a freethinker and chronicler of everyday life in turbulent 19th century Paris, Honoré Daumier lived during a pivotal time in France’s history. 'Visions of Paris' sets out to explore his legacy through 130 works, many of which have never been seen in the UK before, with a concentration on paintings, drawings, watercolours and sculptures.

Daumier's work has been admired by artists both of his time such as Degas and Delacroix as well as those who followed; from Picasso and Francis Bacon to Paula Rego and Quentin Blake. Daumier made his living as a caricaturist in newspapers, observing and ridiculing the conceits of bourgeois society, reserving special criticism for dishonest politicians and lawyers; even earning himself a spell in jail for his depiction of King Louis Philippe as Gargantua.

Click here to view images from the exhibition

Broadly chronological, this exhibition is the first to go beyond Daumier’s lithographs in the UK since 1961. Spanning the decades from 1830 to 1879 it will look at the range of his output, from disturbing images of fugitives from the cholera epidemics and deeply felt images of the laundresses and street entertainers living in his neighbourhood to his take on the role of spectators and collectors in judging art. In its variety and breadth, this exhibition will give visitors visions of Paris to live long in the memory.

Mira Schendel (1919–1988) was one of Latin America’s most important and prolific post-war artists. With her contemporaries Lygia Clark and Hélio Oiticica, Schendel reinvented the language of European Modernism in Brazil. Tate Modern is staging the first ever international full-scale survey of her work. The exhibition reveals aspects of Schendel’s dialogues with a diverse range of philosophers and thinkers, as well as her engagement with universal ideas of faith, self-understanding and existence. It brings together over 250 paintings, drawings and sculptures from across her entire career, including works which have never been exhibited before.

 

 

 

 

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