News Archive

Private View held by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 22nd August 2012


Happy Birthday, Mr Punch celebrates the 350th anniversary of the first recorded sighting in Britain of a Punch And Judy show, in Covent Garden, as mentioned by Samuel Pepys in his diary. It is an exhibition of two parts. Punch Professors In England is a collection of photographs by Tom Hunter of contemporary Punch practitioners, known since Victorian times as 'Professors', who for generations have brought the story of Punch and Judy to life with their wit and personality. These portraits depict each Professor with their booth, expressing their highly individual approaches to their appearance and performance in quintessentially English settings. From the oldest Punch and Judy man in the Britain (who is, in fact, a woman) to a father and daughter Punch and Judy team, these images reveal the unique characters who keep the tradition alive. Each Punch and Judy booth is uniquely decorated and adorned with a beautiful hand painted stage drop, making each one an artwork in its own right, with its own history and tradition. That's The Way To Do It! is a display that delves into Punch's theatrical origins as the charismatic 16th century Italian character Pulcinella, looking at his influence on popular culture and his development into the comedian of the seaside booth we know today. Objects include historic Punch and Judy puppets; Mr Gus Wood's booth, dating from 1912; prints and posters; and the first ever photograph of a Punch and Judy show being watched from 1860. Museum Of Childhood, Cambridge Heath Road, Bethnal Green, London E2, until 9th December.

Treasures From The Queen's Palaces brings together some of the finest treasures from the Royal Collection to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. The artefacts in the Royal Collection, reflect the tastes of monarchs and other members of the royal family who have shaped one of the world's great art collections. The selection of 100 outstanding works in this exhibition has been made across the entire breadth of the Royal Collection, from 8 royal residences across the country and over 5 centuries of collecting. It includes paintings, drawings, miniatures, watercolours, manuscripts, furniture, sculpture, ceramics and jewellery. Highlights include paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens, Hals, Hogarth, Landseer, Van Dyck, Canaletto and Nash; drawings by Leonardo, Michelangelo, Poussin, Raphael and Holbein; The Sobieski Book of Hours and The Mainz Psalter; furniture by Chippendale and Woodruff; exquisite jewellery from all over the world; and Imperial Easter Eggs by Faberge. The Queen's Gallery, Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh, until 4th November.

A Family In Wartime offers a picture of what life was like on the Home Front during the Second World War through the eyes of one family. The exhibition explores the lives of William and Alice Allpress and their 10 children, and reveals what life in London was really like during the war. Tracing their journey from the outbreak of war, the exhibition aims to bring home the reality of events such as the Blitz and evacuation. First hand audio accounts from members of the family, together with family photographs and an intricate model of their family home at 69 Priory Grove, South London, present a personal and intriguing insight into ordinary family life during this time of great uncertainty. Typical tasks included assisting in the evacuation of children, organising clothing exchanges, running rest centres and offering practical and emotional support to those affected by air raids. There are everyday household items from the era, such as stirrup pumps which people were encouraged to keep in case of incendiary bombs, and cookery books which gave advice on how to cook with limited rations. Newspaper clippings, propaganda posters and film footage help piece together a picture of life from the outbreak of war, from the everyday struggles, to the end of the war and the VE day celebrations. Artworks offer creative interpretations of wartime living, including Henry Moore's ghostly drawing of women and children settling in for a night on a London tube platform, Wilfred Haines's striking image of a flying bomb raid, and in contrast, Leila Faithful's nostalgic oil painting of evacuees growing cabbages in an English country garden. Imperial War Museum, London, until 31st December.


Superhuman explores the extraordinary ways people have sought to improve, adapt and enhance their body's performance. The exhibition brings together over 100 artworks, artefacts, videos, photographs, comics and medical objects, which record our seemingly limitless desire to be more than ourselves. From an ancient Egyptian prosthetic toe to the superheroes of sci-fi imagination and the futuristic promises of nano and biotechnology, the exhibition takes the long view of physical and chemical enhancement, and explores the science, myths and cultural reception of body extension. The show opens with a look at what constitutes an enhancement, from everyday objects such as glasses and false teeth to sex aids and iphones, and investigates the benefits and side effects of their use. There is a focus on the long history of prosthetics, both as enabling devices and covers for society's discomfort with missing body parts. Striking images and artefacts include a 19th century silver nose attached to spectacles for a women disfigured by syphilis; James Gillingham's studio photographs of Victorian women displaying their artificial limbs but concealing their faces; and gas powered artificial arms, developed in an attempt to 'normalise' children affected by thalidomide in the 1960s. Films include Matthew Barney's 'Cremaster', with model, athlete and double amputee Aimee Mullins performing roles involving beautiful and metamorphic prostheses, that grant surreally envisaged superpowers; and Dorothy Cross's 'Eyemaker', following an ocularist's creation of a glass eye. The history of adaptions made in pursuit of athletic advantage is illustrated by exhibits including the patents of Nike's early waffle sole trainers, the debate over blade legs, and a display about the rise of isotonic drinks. Wellcome Collection, London, until 16th October.

World Class: Masterpieces From The Devonshire Collection provides the first opportunity in over 100 years to see Old Master drawings from what is considered to be the greatest historic family collection outside the Royal Collection. The Devonshire Collection includes more than 3,000 works from both the Italian and Northern Schools. A selection of the finest drawings is on display in a purpose built space that not only provides the necessary environmental conditions for these masterpieces, but also recreates the effect of a historic collector's cabinet. The exhibition includes drawings by Brueghel the Elder, Durer, Leonardo, Raphael, Rembrandt, Rubens, Titian and Van Dyck. To complement the drawings, Rembrandt's 'King Uzziah' hangs above a Florentine pietra dura cabinet, and a French Boulle marquetry cabinet housing ivories and Limoges enamels completes the display.

A Hundred Years Of House Parties celebrates three generations of entertaining from the golden age of the Edwardian era through to the present day. The exhibition shows the glamour of the glory days of country house weekends that often including members of the royal family, with grand dining, theatricals, society parties and shoots, but it also looks at life below stairs, revealing how a family Christmas with over 100 guests was organised by the cooks, housekeepers, secretaries, porters and footmen.

Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, World Class: Masterpieces From The Devonshire Collection until 9th November ~ A Hundred Years Of House Parties until 23rd December.

Andy Warhol: The Portfolios features some of the American master of Pop Art's most iconic print portfolios, as well as lesser known sets. Andy Warhol was always a printmaker - the works that are generally called paintings were made using silkscreen techniques from commercial printing, but produced as one-offs on canvas, rather than multiple editions of images on paper. From 1967 onwards Warhol began to create the 'portfolios' - groups of 10 works produced in editions of 100 to 250. This exhibition is a selection from those series, alongside one-off trial prints made while searching for definitive colour variations. Many reprise famous images, such as the Campbells soup cans and Flowers, but in others Warhol experiments with age old artistic genres, such as still life and landscape. The exhibition comprises 80 works from 13 portfolios, made from the early 1960s through to the mid 1980s. Iconic portraits of Muhammad Ali, Marilyn Monroe, self portraits, and heroic and mythical figures like Superman and Uncle Sam, hang amongst surprises like 1979's 'Space Fruit: Still Lifes', 1980's 'Jews of the 20th century' and 1981's 'Myths'. These dazzlingly decorative prints, hung densely packed like a Pop Rococo 'print room', create a psychedelic feast of colour and image. Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road, Dulwich, London SE21, until 16th September.

William Morris Gallery has reopened following a £10m restoration of the house and gardens. The gallery is located in the house where William Morris, founder of the Arts and Crafts movement, supporter of the Pre-Raphaelites, socialist pioneer, designer, craftsman and visionary, was born, and its collection represents all aspects of his work. The 18th century, Grade II* listed building has been completely refurbished, revealing many of the original Georgian features for the first time. The gardens have also been restored using design and planting inspired by Morris and plans of the garden from the 18th century. The transformation provides three new galleries offering the chance for previously unseen works to be displayed, a library, research and education centre and a new Georgian orangery-inspired extension housing a tearoom and balcony overlooking the gardens. Almost 600 objects are now on display across 12 galleries, exploring different aspects of Morris's life. These include personal items such as the satchel in which he always carried his sketchings, essays and political pamphlets; wallpaper designs encompassing his first ever and the one designed for St James's Palace; some of the firm's earliest tiles, such as the 'Beauty and the Beast' panel; and stained glass designs that made the firm's name; plus designs, paintings and furniture by the artists and craftspeople Morris surrounded himself with, including works by Edward Burne-Jones, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Ford Madox Brown and Phillip Webb. The new temporary exhibition gallery features Grayson Perry's large 'Walthamstow Tapestry', which explores the emotional resonance of brand names in our lives and our quasi-religious relationship to consumerism. William Morris Gallery, Lloyd Park, Forest Road, Walthamstow, London E17, continuing.

Expanding Horizons: Giovanni Battista Lusieri And The Panoramic Landscape features the work of one of the most gifted landscape watercolourists of all time. This is the first solo exhibition ever to be devoted to Giovanni Battista Lusieri, an artist who was widely acclaimed in his lifetime but whose work has been undeservedly overlooked in the last 200 years. Set against the backdrop of the Napoleonic wars, much of Lusieri's life story reads like a film script. He was employed by Thomas Bruce, 7th Earl of Elgin, was closely involved with the removal of the Elgin Marbles from Greece to Britain, and tragically, a large proportion of his later work was destroyed at sea on the journey back from Athens after his death, leaving his reputation to descend into obscurity. One of very few Italian artists of this period to adopt watercolour as his favoured medium, Lusieri often worked on an ambitious scale, combining a broad, panoramic vision, an uncanny ability to capture brilliant Mediterranean light and a meticulous, almost photographic attention to detail. This exhibition brings together about 85 watercolours and drawings, plus his only two known works in oil. Lusieri worked principally as a painter of topographical views and close-up views of ancient monuments. He was passionately dedicated to working directly from nature, and unlike most of his contemporaries who worked in watercolour, insisted wherever possible on colouring his drawings outside, on the spot. The exhibition includes Lusieri's single most ambitious watercolour, the 9ft wide 'Bay of Naples from Palazzo Sessa', and some of his numerous views of Vesuvius erupting by moonlight, which were amongst his most popular works. Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh, until 28th October.

The Nazi Games: Politics, The Media And The Body is a timely reminder of how governments have used Olympic Games for propaganda purposes, examining the most successful - and infamous - example. The 1936 Olympic Games left a deep impression on history, including astounding innovations, from the athletes' village and torch relay, which were adopted permanently by the Olympic organisation, to live broadcasts of events, from slow-motion replays of athletes to overwhelming displays of political power. The Nazis exploited the mass media to create images of the body that pushed its message of racial purity and superiority. Drawing on an extensive collection of propaganda, including pamphlets, photographs and illustrated books, the exhibition exposes the astonishing skill of the Nazis as manipulators of public opinion, while also highlighting the stories of people who resisted Nazi views of the ideal sporting body. Among the exhibits are dramatic stills by Leni Riefenstahl; an American pamphlet called 'Preserve the Olympic Ideal', which made the case against American participation; and a range of bona fide souvenirs designed to cash in on the Games, often incorporating Nazi imagery. There is also an exhibit about a German refugee doctor at Stoke Mandeville hospital who set up a sporting contest that eventually became the Paralympics. The Wiener Library, 29 Russell Square, London WC1, until 3rd October.


Designing 007: Fifty Years Of Bond Style showcases the inside story of the design and style of the world's most influential and iconic movie brand. It is a multi-sensory experience, immersing visitors in the creation and development of Bond style over its 50 year history. The exhibition explores the craft behind the screen icons, the secret service and villains, tailoring and costumes, set and production design, automobiles, gadgets and special effects, graphic design and motion graphics, exotic locations, stunts and props, and the original scripts. It draws together the ongoing themes and recurring visual images throughout the film series, charting the making and presentation of Bond style through some 400 items. These include gadgets and weapons made for Bond and his notorious adversaries by special effects experts John Stears and Chris Corbould, along with artwork for sets and storyboards by production designers Ken Adam, Peter Lamont and Syd Cain, and costume designs by Bumble Dawson, Donfeld, Julie Harris, Lindy Hemming, Ronald Patterson, Emma Porteous, and Jany Temime, not to mention Hollywood costume designers and major fashion names including Giorgio Armani, Brioni, Roberto Cavalli, Tom Ford, Hubert de Givenchy, Gucci's Frida Giannini, Douglas Hayward, Rifat Ozbek, Jenny Packham, Miuccia Prada, Oscar de la Renta, Anthony Sinclair, Philip Treacy, Emanuel Ungaro and Donatella Versace. Among the highlights are Scaramanga's Golden Gun, Oddjob's steel-rimmed bowler hat, the proto-type of Rosa Klebb's deadly flick-knife shoes, Jaws' fearsome teeth, and Bond's 1964 Aston Martin DB5. The exhibition is spread throughout the building, and the exhibits are interspersed with clips from the films showing them in use. Barbican Centre, London, until 5th September.

Picasso Prints: The Vollard Suite is the first time that a complete set of the Spanish artist's most celebrated series of etchings has been shown in Britain. The Vollard Suite comprises 100 etchings produced by Pablo Picasso between 1930 and 1937, at a critical juncture in his career. They were commissioned by Ambroise Vollard, the greatest avant-garde Paris art dealer and print publisher of his day, who gave Picasso his first Paris exhibition in 1901. The prints were made when Picasso was involved in a passionate affair with his muse and model, Marie-Therese Walter, whose classical features are a recurrent presence in the series. They offer evidence of an ongoing process of change and metamorphosis that eludes any final resolution. Picasso gave no order to the plates nor did he assign any titles to them. He kept the plates open-ended to allow connections to be freely made among them, yet certain thematic groupings can be identified. The predominant theme of the Vollard Suite is the Sculptor's Studio, which deals with Picasso's engagement with classical sculpture. The etchings of Marie-Therese, represent a dialogue alternating between the artist and his creation and between the artist and his model. Various scenarios are played out between the sculptor, the model and the created work. Among them is the classical myth of Pygmalion in which the sculptor becomes so enamoured of his creation that it comes to life at the artist's touch. Classical linearity and repose within the studio also alternate with darker, violent forces. The latter are represented by scenes of brutal passion and by the Minotaur, the half-man, half-animal of classical myth, which became central to Picasso's personal mythology. The series concludes with three portraits of Vollard himself, made in 1937. British Museum until 2nd September.

Royal River: Power, Pageantry And The Thames brings to life the history of the Thames as Britain's royal river and London's 'grandest street'. The exhibition evokes the sights, sounds and even the smells of half a millennium of royal river pageantry and popular celebration, and shows how the river pageants were used to celebrate the coronation and inauguration of Tudor and Stuart Queens. For hundreds of years the Thames has been a unique site for royal, national and civic ceremony and celebration. Providing a larger stage than any street on land, the river has seen the pomp of spectacular coronations, the music and fireworks of extravagant processions, and the bustle of festive frost fairs, where rich and poor mingled on its frozen surface. A wealth of fascinating objects take visitors from Anne Boleyn's coronation procession to Lord Nelson's funeral, from the gilded magnificence of the Lord Mayor's pageant to the noxious horror of the 'Great Stink', and from the great riverside seats of regal power to the floating palaces of the royal yachts. Among the nearly 400 paintings, manuscripts and beautiful artefacts are rarely seen uniforms, silver and barge decorations from the City's many livery companies, an elaborate silver microscope made for George III and the 16th century Pearl Sword, which to this day the monarch must touch upon entering the City of London. Other highlights include the oldest known copy of Handel's Water Music, Bazalgette's original contract drawings for the construction of the Thames embankment, Anne Boleyn's personal music book, the magnificent stern carvings from the Royal Yacht Victoria and Albert III, and a remarkable collection of paintings by Canaletto. National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, until 2nd September.