News Archive

Private View held by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 8th December 2010

Psychoanalysis: The Unconscious In Everyday Life explores the workings of the unconscious mind, and the contribution of psychoanalysis to the understanding of the mind and culture. The exhibition aims to examine the broad contemporary relevance of psychoanalysis in a way that is accessible to a wide audience. It focuses on a key concept of psychoanalysis: how the unconscious can be interpreted through everyday experiences, and in artefacts, both historical and contemporary. This is done through a range of modern and historical objects, contemporary artworks and digital animation. Notable objects include: a selection of Sigmund Freud's personal collection of Ancient Greek and Roman antiquities, which surrounded the psychoanalyst in his consulting room; body casts of masks, feet, eyes and phalluses from the museum's collection that are not usually on public view; a selection of drawings from one of the most famous case studies by Melanie Klein, the pioneer of child analysis, which have never been on public display before; an array of everyday things old and new, whose hidden associations and unconscious meanings are unravelled by the voices of leading psychoanalysts; and artworks by contemporary artists Arnold Dreyblatt, Mona Hatoum, Joseph Kosuth, Grayson Perry,Tim Noble and Sue Webster, Carlo Zanni, Sonny Sanjay Vadgama, Kristian de la Riva, Amelie von Harrach and Damian Le Sueur, which take inspiration from psychoanalytical ideas. Science Museum until 15th April.

The Young Vermeer presents a unique opportunity to explore the development of one of the world's most celebrated artists. Despite the regard in which he is held, there are only 36 of Johannes Vermeer's paintings in existence. This exhibition reunites 3 of his early works, created between 1653 and 1656, from galleries around the world. They suggest a tantalising experimental phase in Vermeer's early career, as he explored classical and biblical subjects, and also reveal his fascination with light and colour. 'Diana and her Nymphs' is a serene and intimate painting, showing the mythological goddess Diana and her companions in a wooded landscape. It is thought to have been created soon after Vermeer had entered the painters' guild. 'Christ in the House of Martha and Mary', dating from slightly later, is the largest of Vermeer's surviving works. The subject is taken from St Luke's gospel, and can perhaps be linked to Vermeer's conversion to Catholicism. 'The Procuress' is a brothel scene, which marks two significant shifts in Vermeer's work: his move towards painting 'genre scenes', which show figures in everyday activities, and the development towards his mature style, rendering shapes in smooth and colourful hues of light and shade. The 3 paintings on show in this exhibition offer an insight into Vermeer's formative period, as they are strikingly different from his later works, which concentrate almost exclusively on domestic interiors. National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh, until 13th March.

Dior Illustrated: Rene Gruau And The Line Of Beauty is a celebration of the renowned illustrator who created some of the most iconic fashion images of the 20th century. This exhibition showcases over 40 artworks by Rene Gruau from the 1940s and 1950s, including original illustrations for Christian Dior Parfums, vintage perfume bottles, sketches, posters and magazines. It also features a selection of Dior Haute Couture dresses chosen by John Galliano, including a dress designed by Galliano himself in homage to Gruau. During his career Rene Gruau illustrated for Balmain, Balenciaga, Lanvin and Givenchy, essentially altering the way luxury fashion was advertised. Gruau's bold lines and fluid style were perfectly in tune with the spirit of Dior, capturing the energy, elegance and audacity of the brand. His illustrations also tell of a special understanding Gruau had of Christian Dior himself, born of a close friendship between the two men that lasted for almost 40 years. Gruau was very unusual because he loved working with advertising, which was very uncommon at the time. He influenced the graphic style of a whole generation of fashion illustrators, and the exhibition also features specially commissioned pieces from the British based illustrators Jasper Goodall, Daisy Fletcher, Erin Petson, Richard Kilroy and Sarah Arnett, whose works draws inspiration from the collaboration between Gruau and the House of Dior. Somerset House, The Strand, London, until 9th January.

Continuing

Bridget Riley: Paintings And Related Work offers an opportunity to see how recent paintings by one of Britain's most significant abstract painters of the second half of the 20th century relates to the works of Old Masters. Although Bridget Riley first came to prominence as one of the founders of the Op Art movement in the early 1960s, working initially in black, white and grey, introducing colour only in 1967, she has always had a deep interest in the Old Masters, looking at and learning their uses of colour, line and composition. The exhibition includes one of Riley's first endeavors as an emerging artist, a copy of Jan van Eyck's 'Portrait of a Man'. Two of Riley's works have been made directly onto the walls of the gallery: 'Composition with Circles 7', specially created for this exhibition, and a version of her wall-painting, 'Arcadia'. Among the paintings by Old Masters are Mantegna's 'Introduction of the Cult of Cybele to Rome', Raphael's 'Saint Catherine of Alexandria', and three studies by Georges Seurat. Recent paintings on canvas, which have introduced new curvilinear rhythms and movements into Riley's work, are seen alongside some of her earlier paintings, and a selection of works on paper that help to explain her development and working process. In an accompanying film, Bridget Riley discusses her lifelong artistic relationship with the works of Old Masters. National Gallery until 22nd May.

Invitation To The Ballet: Ninette de Valois And The Story Of The Royal Ballet charts the development of The Royal Ballet from its foundations in the late 1920s to the present day. The exhibition tells the remarkable story of how Ninette De Valois, a young Irish dancer born Edris Stannus, who started her career impersonating Anna Pavlova in English seaside pier theatres, went on to found The Royal Ballet, which has since become one of the world's leading companies. Drawing on the Royal Ballet's extensive archive, over 40 costumes, worn by some of the greatest names in ballet, from Rudolf Nureyev and Antoinette Sibley to Darcey Bussell and Jonathan Cope, are on show, together with set and costume designs by designers and artists including Pablo Picasso, Edward Burra, William Chappell, Rex Whistler, Oliver Messel and Yolanda Sonnabend. In addition there are photographs, films, programmes, letters, press cuttings, music manuscripts, dance notation scores, posters and other memorabilia. Among the highlights is a recreation of Margot Fonteyn's dressing room, with her dressing table, personal letters, original practice clothes, costumes, shoes and props. The exhibition also illustrates L S Lowry's involvement with ballet, and shows how his appreciation of art, music and dance affected his work. It includes a triptych of mannequins that has never been on public display before, and portraits of Ann Hilder, believed to have been inspired by de Valois performance as Swanhilda in Coppelia. The Lowry, Salford, until 6th March.

Christmas Past: 400 Years Of Seasonal Traditions In English Homes looks at the meanings and origins of our Christmas and New Year customs, including the holly and the ivy, mistletoe and kissing boughs, decorations, trees, fire and candlelight, carol singing and the Yule log. Also featured are traditional foods and drink, with wassailing, parties, mulled wine, cakes and puddings. Twelve period living rooms decorated in authentic festive styles from 1600 to 2000 reflect our changing social habits, and show how Christmas as we now know it has evolved, from feasting, dancing and kissing under the mistletoe to playing parlour games, hanging up stockings, sending cards, decorating the tree and throwing cocktail parties. There is an accompanying programme of events focusing on 20th and 21st century festivities, highlighting the main developments and changes in the domestic celebration of Christmas, with the switch from home crafted to shop bought decorations and food, the increasing popularity of Santa Claus, and the growing prominence of children, plus decoration, card making and other craft workshops, candle lit entertainment, talks, carols and other Christmas music, right through to the burning of holly and ivy on Twelfth Night, with seasonal food and drink available. The museum is located in fourteen almshouses built in 1715 by the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers. Geffrye Museum, Shoreditch, London, until 5th January.

Images And Sacred Texts: Buddhism Across Asia explores the 'three jewels' of Buddhism through sacred texts, painted scrolls and sculptures. The exhibition focuses on the institutional and organisational core of Buddhism, the 'three jewels', consisting of the Buddha himself, his teachings, and the monastic community. These are found wherever Buddhism is practiced, and have been represented in a paintings, sculptures, texts and manuscripts that reflect and perpetuate their qualities. The objects on display include exquisite gold sculptures of the Buddha, beautiful texts on palm leaf and paper, and a selection of images of Buddhist monks. They originate from the whole Asian continent, including Mongolia, India, Tibet, China, Thailand, Cambodia, Korea and Japan and date from the 2nd century AD to the 20th century. The exhibition reveals the remarkable similarities between visual and written material throughout Asia, from Sri Lanka to Japan, over this period. It examines the Buddha's life and illustrates how Buddhism is based on his teachings, provides an introduction to Bodhisattvas (individual beings who have the potential to become Buddhas), looks at the way the Buddhist tradition perpetuated its sacred texts in different media, and examines the monastic community responsible for the preservation and transmission of the Buddha's teaching. Many of these objects have never been on display before, and due to the fragility of the paintings and texts, some items in the display will be changed halfway through the exhibition run. British Museum until 3rd April.

Gods And Monsters: John Deakin's Portraits Of British Artists pairs iconic portraits of British artists by the legendary Vogue photographer, with major paintings by each artist, providing a unique view of early post-war British art and London's artistic bohemia. John Deakin began his career as a photographer with Vogue but, despite achieving recognition for the photographs he took there, he never took it seriously and never expected it to make him a living - and his bad behaviour was legendary. Deakin yearned to be a painter like his friends Francis Bacon, Robert Colquhoun, Lucian Freud and Michael Andrews, all of whom he photographed. In turn, Andrews and Freud both painted his likeness. Deakin was a celebrated part of the artistic circle that convened in the pubs and clubs of Soho. Portraits in this exhibition are drawn largely from a portfolio commissioned by Vogue of 12 contemporary artists in 1951 and 1952, along with other portraits of painters and sculptors made by Deakin for the magazine at various times throughout his career. Deakin's photographs, typically tightly-cropped headshots often greater than life-size, make no concessions to vanity. After pushing the contrast in his prints to its maximum, every pore and blemish is exposed in intimate close-up. Artists and subjects featured include: Michael Andrews, Frank Auerbach, Francis Bacon, Robert Colquhoun, John Craxton, Lucian Freud, William Gear, Barbara Hepworth, Patrick Heron, Robert Macbryde, Robert Medley, John Minton, Eduardo Paolozzi, John Piper, Alan Reynolds, Ceri Richards, Leonard Rosoman, William Scott, Graham Sutherland, William Turnbull and Keith Vaughan. Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, until 10th January.

Winter Wonderland, set between Hyde Park Corner and the Serpentine, is the ultimate winter theme park experience. The 20 acre site features London's largest outdoor ice rink - created with 130,000 litres of frozen water, weighing 130 tonnes - able to accommodate up to 400 skaters at a time, with ice guides to help beginners; a toboggan slide; a haunted mansion; an ice palace mirror maze; a traditional Christmas Market, with over 50 separate wooden chalets, offering arts, crafts, presents and foods; numerous cafes and bars serving traditional food and mulled wine; a 50m observation wheel providing a panoramic view of London above the park; a big top presenting Zippo's Circus with a special 50 minute Christmas themed show and Winter Cirque featuring a Wheel of Death a final Battle of Fire; Carter's Steam Fair traditional rides and attractions; thrill rides including Power Tower, Rollercoaster, Black Hole and Ice Monster; a ski jump and snow ride; and a selection of gentler amusement rides for younger children; plus Father Christmas in his own Santa Land. To add to the atmosphere, the trees along Serpentine Road sparkle with thousands of Christmas lights highlighting the natural beauty of Hyde Park. Entrance to the Winter Wonderland site is free, with fees for individual attractions. Hyde Park, 10am-10pm daily (except Christmas Day) until 4th January.

Concluding

Dream Voices: Siegfried Sassoon, Memory And War traces the complex intertwining of the documented, the remembered, and the imagined in published and unpublished writings of the First World War poet. The display looks at how the horrors of the war changed Siegfried Sassoon from being a patriot of his country, to being a stern critic of government and political leaders. The tension between life as he was living it and recollections of his former self lay behind much of Sassoon's writing, and memory - sensuously evoked but stringently selected - was central to his literary achievement. The material on view includes the pocket notebooks in which Sassoon kept a journal of his time on the Western Front, including diary entries for the first day on the Somme, and the moment when he was shot by a sniper at the Battle of Arras; autograph poems and letters home written while on active service in France; a verse letter from his friend the novelist and poet Robert Graves that Sassoon carried tucked inside his diary in his tunic pocket in battle; heavily-worked drafts of post-war poems and autobiographies; personal photographs and sketches; notebooks and diaries recording his sporting exploits, including fox hunting, riding and cricket; rare and annotated printed editions; the notebook in which he originally wrote his Soldier's Declaration, the iconic 1917 protest against the continuation of the First World War, still stained with the mud of the trenches, the telegram summoning him to Army HQ to explain himself when it became public, and his own printed copy. Cambridge University Library until 23rd December.

R100 & R101 Airships At Cardington marks the 80th Anniversary of the R101 disaster with an examination of the British airship industry in the 1930s. The exhibition charts the story of how a small village became the country's major airship centre. Starting with the building of the huge airship sheds at Cardington (which still remain today), it then explores the government's grand plans for long distance airship travel across the British Empire. Film, photographs and objects bring to life the construction of the R100 and R101 airships in the Royal Airship Works, the stories of their staff and crew, and the R101's final fateful flight to India in October 1930, crashing in a field in France en route. The exhibition includes a wide variety of artifacts on display together for the first time, with personal belongings, unique documents and objects, including a passenger bunk bed from the R100 showing what life was like onboard these giants of the sky, designed to be 'floating hotels'. The R101 boasted two decks with luxury cabins, a dining room accommodating 60 people, a smoking room, and a spacious lounge of 5,500 square feet on its upper deck. Although airship building slowed down dramatically after the crash of the R101, the exhibition also shows how this was far from the end of the story of Cardington, which has seen regular attempts to resurrect the airship concept right up to the present day. Bedford Museum until 19th December.

Ruins, Rotas And Romance marks the 50th anniversary of the discovery of the remains of Britain's largest Roman palace. In true British style, the palace was discovered by accident during the digging of a water main trench in 1960. The discovery led to 9 seasons of excavations that showed the site had developed from a military base at the time of the Roman invasion in AD43 to a sumptuous palace by the end of the 1st century. It was the one of the biggest systematic Romano-British excavations of its time, undertaken by hundreds of volunteers from all over the world, with around 70 working together at any one time. Between 1995 and 2002, new excavations revealed exciting new insights into the development of the site. The palace and gardens contain a hypocaust (the Roman under floor heating system) and the largest collection of near perfect in-situ mosaic floors in Britain, some 20 in all, including the famous 'Cupid on a Dolphin' mosaic. Over the years the garden has been replanted true to the original plan revealed by the archaeology. The story of the excavations and the people whose labours revealed these treasures is told through an audio-visual programme, rare records, handwritten notes, diaries, photographs, plans, reconstruction drawings and models, together with artefacts that were discovered. Fishbourne Roman Palace, near Chichester, West Sussex, until 15th December.