News Archive

Private View held by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 21st March 2001


Centenary Exhibition features an eclectic selection of around 100 paintings, drawings and sculptures chosen from some of the 725 shows in the gallery's first hundred years. It is not a chronological overview, but a celebration of the diversity and unpredictability of its programming. The works have been selected by artists Anish Kapoor and Rosemarie Trockel, current director Catherine Lampert, and past directors Nicholas Serota and Bryan Robertson. They include pieces by some of the great names who had their first major British exhibition in the gallery, such as Emil Nolde, David Hockney, Bill Viola, Anthony Caro, Eva Hesse, Frida Kahlo and Philip Guston; major living and historic figures from Lucian Freud to Rembrandt, and George Stubbs to Andy Warhol; and key pieces from themed exhibitions such as Richard Hamilton's collaged poster for 'This Is Tomorrow'. There is also a Documentary Space with projections of landmark art works that no longer exist or are too fragile to show, installations, and live events. Whitechapel Gallery until 20th May.

Swallows And Amazons features a collection of boats associated with Arthur Ransome's classic children's novel. They include the sailing dinghies Mavis, which was Ransome's model for Amazon, and Coch-y-Bonddhu in which he learned to sail, and the twin screw steam yacht Esperance which inspired Captain Flint's houseboat. Outdoors the unique permanent collection of 15 craft, mostly still in working order, illustrates key stages in the development of steam launches. Dolly shows the primitive application of steam power and is unique, having been salvaged after 67 years on a lake bed, while Branksome exemplifies the development and ultimate refinement of steamboats. Indoors displays range from high speed craft to Beatrix Potter's rowing boat. There are working examples of authentic model steam boats and sailing yachts in various stages of construction, with weekend demonstrations. The launches Swallow, Osprey or Water Viper run trips on the lake every day throughout the season. Windermere Steamboat Centre until 28th October.

Design Into Architecture explores the relationship between Renaissance architecture and the other arts of design - painting, sculpture and decorative arts - through drawings from the 15th to 17th centuries. The aim is to demonstrate the role of 'disengo' as the conceptual basis of visual invention at a period when architecture did not yet exist as a separate profession. It includes studies for altars, tombs, ceilings, liturgical furnishings and stage sets, as well as drawings after classical antiquity and architectural views. The centrepiece is a group of works by Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo. Christ Church Picture Gallery, Oxford until 12th April.


Luis Barragan: The Quiet Revolution is a major retrospective of the work of the Mexican architect who is an outstanding figure in the field of modern architecture, having had a significant influence in domestic, commercial and garden design. Barragan is best known for his dramatic emphasis on colour and geometric simplicity, and the use of water, light and scale in his work. despite the fact that he died over a decade ago, Barragan is a designer whose time has come, as his work bears a striking resemblance to the end products of the Home Front and Home Front In The Garden television series. Many of today's design preoccupations of 'bringing the outside in' (and inside out) result from his unique approach to domestic space. This exhibition looks at Barragan's most admired buildings, as well as some projects which were never executed. It charts the evolution of his vision of modern spaces for living and working through plans, sketches, photographs and models. Design Museum until 8th July.

RRS Discovery, Captain Scott's polar exploration ship was launched in Dundee on 21st March 1901, and has now returned to celebrate her centenary and become part of a permanent exhibition about the National Antarctic Expedition. Discovery was one of the last wooden three-masted ships built in Britain and the first to be constructed specifically for scientific research. The exhibition takes visitors through her building, launch and preparation for departure, to a recreation of the conditions that Scott and his crew experienced in Antarctica. It houses a number of original artefacts including the ship's organ and a sea chest. On the ship itself the bridge is now open after painstaking restoration, and below decks visitors can explore the engine and boiler rooms, and the galley and mess deck, and Scott's cabin. Discovery Point, Dundee continuing.

Turner's Gallery, House and Library goes back to basics to mark the 150th anniversary of the death of J M W Turner, Britain's greatest painter. It has recreated Turner's own showcase with the collection of paintings which hung in a purpose-built gallery in his house in London. These are the works by which he wished to be remembered. It presents an impression of what contemporary visitors to Queen Anne Street would have seen, including a simulation of the 'Indian red, neither pale nor dark' that a friend recalled on the walls of the original gallery. Another section of the exhibition presents Turner's house, through which visitors passed on their way to the gallery. This contains his personal collection of pictures, drawings and prints which reflect his friendships and interests, and provided inspiration for his work. Books from Turner's fine library are also displayed many with dedications from their authors. Tate Britain until 15th July.

Tell Me A Picture is an alphabetical anthology of twenty-six pictures with a sense of story, assembled by the Children's Laureate Quentin Blake, best known as the illustrator of Roald Dahl books. His aim is to encourage young viewers to engage with a wide range of striking and imaginative images. There are no titles for the pictures on the walls of the gallery as viewers are invited to imagine for themselves the different stories or situations. Entrance to the exhibition is free, and there is an interactive talk for children aged 5 to 11 and their families each Saturday at 2.30pm. In a unique move the exhibition can also be seen online. Visitors are encouraged to submit their own stories based on the situations represented in the pictures, and can also read other visitors ideas. They can then find out what Blake has to say, together with information on the pictures and their artists. The online exhibition can be found on the National Gallery web site via the link opposite. National Gallery until 17th June.

Kerry Stewart is a pop sculptor whose work has been likened to a waxworks with a surreal edge. Her tragi-comic life size figures of pregnant schoolgirls, nuns, ghosts and monsters all have a strong attitude in the mysterious and intriguing situations they portray and stories they tell. The nave quality of the hand coloured fibreglass, plaster and silicon models suggest both a childlike view of the world and a sense of the outsider. This exhibition in the Project Space, brings together two new works - a couple on holiday in France and a young woman getting ready for a night out - with three recent pieces. They combine to produce a group that is both humorous and dark, and which directly engages the viewer in a shared daydream. Stewart came to prominence in the mid '90s as one of the Young British Artists at the Saatchi Gallery. Tate Liverpool until 22nd April.

Views From The Edge - the Great British Coast draws on a collection of newly commissioned works from the National Trust Photographic Library to take visitors on a tour of the coast of the British Isles. It celebrates the diversity, unpredictability and beauty of the British coastline, highlighting many areas of dramatic natural beauty such as the White Cliffs of Dover and the Giant's Causeway, as well as reflecting the pleasures of being beside the sea. Positioned next to the permanent display The Future Of The Sea, the exhibition focuses on the marine environment and contemporary issues affecting the coast today. The photographs record the distinctive coastal geography and flora, the ways in which people use the coast for work and play, and the challenges and opportunities facing this unique environment. Photographers whose work figures strongly in the exhibition include Joe Cornish, David Norton, Ian Shaw and Leo Mason. National Maritime Museum until 1st October.


The Genius Of Rome: 1592-1623 examines a period when Rome became the leading artistic centre, with young and ambitious artists flocking there from throughout Italy and the rest of Europe. It focuses on the ways in which Caravaggio, Carracci, Elsheimer, Rubens and their contemporaries responded to similar artistic themes, influenced one another, and jointly laid the foundations for what was to become the Baroque style. They created paintings which were far more direct, natural and immediate than those of their predecessors. Caravaggio is undoubtedly the star in involving his audience with his subjects. 'The Taking Of Christ' (in which he appears carrying a lantern) embodies the spirit of the movement in its observation of light, capture of motion, and violence of subject - almost creating a press photograph of the incident. The realism of his 'St John The Baptist', bringing a graphic humanity to a religious figure, illustrates why works of these painters were not always acceptable to the church. The exhibition features some 150 paintings, several of which have never previously been seen in this country, from over 40 artists. The climax of the exhibition is an installation of 16 altarpieces that recreate the atmosphere of a Roman Baroque church. There have been few occasions when such a large collection of history making work has been seen in Britain. Royal Academy of Arts until 16th April.

Hung, Drawn And Caricatured: Cartoons 1750-2000 illustrates the long and colourful history of British caricature, cartoons and graphic satire. The exhibition features more than seventy works, from the 1750's, when graphic satire established itself as a popular art form, to work by Guardian cartoonist Steve Bell and Peter Fluck of Spitting Image. British caricature in its hey day was famous for being cruelly biting, shamelessly coarse and frequently obscene. No Member of Parliament or public figure was safe from merciless pillorying by the likes of Hogarth, Rowlandson and Gillray, which would give today's spin doctors apoplexy. Unsurprisingly their work became hugely popular with the public. The Pump House: People's History Museum, Manchester until 1st April.

Give And Take is a unique collaboration between a David and a Goliath of cultural institutions - the Serpentine Gallery and the Victoria & Albert Museum. It is one exhibition on two sites, designed to provide an opportunity to experience the unexpected connections between contemporary art, and art of the past. Hans Haake has been given the task of rooting around the basement of the V&A and selecting over 100 objects from its reserve collection to create 'Mixed Messages' at the Serpentine. This is an installation of items from different cultures, historical periods and media, viewed afresh by this particular juxtaposition. At the V&A, works by 15 contemporary artists whose natural home would be the Serpentine, are individually insinuated into the period splendour of the mausoleum in Cromwell Road. Those involved include Xu Bing, Wim Delvoye, Jeff Koons, Royy Paine and Yinka Shonibare. Serpentine Gallery and Victoria & Albert Museum until 1st April.