London is the heart of culture with its bustling theatre district in Covent Garden, array of Michelin star restaurants and 5 star hotels and facilities. Adding to this, the number of much-anticipated art exhibitions and events in the city makes it a cultural hotspot and art enthusiasts dream.
Discover the top 10 art exhibitions and events to visit in London now.
1. Anthony Gormley, The Royal Academy
Anthony Gormley is a sculptor widely acclaimed for installations in public spaces that explore the relationship between the human body and space. The artist, who was awarded the Turner Prize in 1994, is most recognised for his Angel Of The North sculpture near Gateshead, and his creation of the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square. This exciting exhibition at Royal Academy Of Art will explore Gormley’s vast use of organic, industrial and elemental materials over the years, including iron, steel, hand-beaten lead, seawater and clay. Some of Gormley's early works which he created between the 1970s and 1980s which have rarely been seen before will also be on display.
Royal Academy Of Arts describes the exhibition as an 'invitation to ask visitors to slow down and become aware of their bodies'. Ends Dec 3rd
2. Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life, Tate Modern
Olafur Eliasson is thought-provoking artist who creates captivating installations which make you become aware of your senses, people surrounding you and the world beyond reality.
Tate Modern described the exhibition as recognising 'Eliasson’s deep engagement with society and the environment. Discover what an artist’s perspective can bring to issues of climate change, energy, migration as well as architecture.'
Discover the complexities of rainbows, reflection of light, geometry, motion patterns and colour theory as determined by Eliasson's studies of the natural world. Ends Jan 5
3. William Blake: The Artist, Tate Britain
The legendary William Blake was known as a radical and rebellious painter, printmaker and poet who created some of the most iconic images of art in Britain.
He has inspired artists, musicians, poets and performers around the world. In a celebration of Blake's 262nd birthday, Tate Britain and St Paul's Cathedral collaborated to display the artists final work titled "Ancient Of Days" onto its dome.
Discover over 300 works by William Blake, including his watercolours, paintings and prints in what is the largest display of Blake's work of all time. Ends Feb 2
4. Tim Walker, The V&A
Tim Walker is described as one of the world's most creative photographers, and in this special exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert Museum (The V&A), you can unveil the creative process of Walker who immersed himself in the museum in preparation for the exhibition.
A brand new series of ten photographs influenced by the V&A collections is also on display.
The V&A is esteemed for preparing exhibitions for icons that have had significant impact on the fashion and culture of the nation, and this exhibition is certainly one to look out for. Ends March 8
5. Albert Oehlen, The Serpentine Gallery
Albert Oehlen has been a key figure in contemporary art since the 1980s. He is known for testing the foundations of traditional painting methods by capturing the combination of abstract, figurative, collage and computer-generated works onto canvas as he experiments with different media is now on display at the Serpentine Gallery.
A selection of Oehlen's works from the 1980s that display expressionist brushwork, surrealist gestures and deliberate amateurism as the artist engages with the history of painting, have been brought together under the rubric of the John Graham Remix series to identify the significance of the architecture and space where his paintings are exhibited.
The artist quoted "I am not interested in the idea of staging my work in a space specifically conceived for it. I think that art should adapt to the architecture or fight with it". Ends Feb 2
6. Mark Leckey: O’ Magic Power of Bleakness, Tate Britain
Tate Britain showcases the works by Turner Prize winner Mark Leckey in what is described as a theatrical, atmospheric exhibition utilising sound and video.
The artist transformed Tate Britain's gallery with a life-size replica of a motorway bridge on the M53 in Merseyside, where he had grown up. This bridge ,which is seen throughout his works in time, is the setting for a new audio play about a group of teenagers inspired by folklore and mysterious fairy stories. Ends Jan 5
7. Rembrandt’s Light, Dulwich Picture Gallery
Rembrandt, known as a master storyteller and master of light, is one of the world's greatest painters in history. This new exhibition at Dulwich Picture Gallery takes you on a journey of Rembrandt's works spanning from 1639–1658.
A total of 35 iconic paintings, etchings and drawings by Rembrandt will be on display, including some of which were loaned by The Louvre and Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum.
You will see Rembrandt's three most famous paintings of women "A Woman Bathing in a Stream", "A Woman in Bed" and the "Gallery’s Girl at a Window" hanging together.
Explore the works in a bespoke setting designed by Dulwich Picture Gallery to further enhance the artists storytelling and capture of light in what is described as an immersive experience. Ends Feb 2
8. Gauguin Portraits, National Gallery
In the very first exhibition solely dedicated to Paul Gaugin's portrait paintings, the National Gallery showcases how the French artist revolutionised the portrait.
Fascinated with French Polynesia, and troubled by the challenging relationships with fellow artists Vincent van Gogh and Meijer de Haan, The Credit Suisse Exhibition Gauguin Portraits focuses on his works between the 1880s to the end of his life in 1903. Ends Jan 26
9. Bridget Riley, Hayward Gallery
Hayward Gallery displays a series of works by celebrated British artist Bridget Riley. Combining the artist's iconic black and white paintings on canvas of the 1960s, expansive canvases with colour bursts, early figurative works and recent wall paintings, this exhibition displays significant series of works by Riley from the 1940s to present day.
You can also view "Continuum" which was created between 1963-2005 and is the one and only three-dimensional artwork that the artist ever created. Ends Jan 26
10. Lucian Freud: The Self Portraits, The Royal Academy
The Royal Academy hosts an exclusive exhibition dedicated to Lucian Freud's self portraits.
A personal exhibition that displays paintings and drawings that tell many stories and happenings of Freud's personal life. Including that of "Hotel Bedroom" of 1954. Freud, still in his early 30's, had been selected to display his works alongside Francis Bacon and Ben Nicholson at the 27th Venice Biennale. Freud was concerned which of his works would be on display and had written to Lilian Somerville of The British Council, but was also unhappy with his personal circumstances as he was living in a room at Hôtel La Louisiane in Paris with his second wife Lady Caroline Blackwood, whom he had married a year earlier. He was under intense pressure and their relationship was already under strain as Lady Blackwood felt that she was a permanent model for Freud's paintings and was bored. Freud stands in front of a broken window in a pose that spills the abundance of emotion and intensity of the scene. Ends Jan 26