Five essential London exhibitions to visit this Easter
As the Easter period has now well and truly begun, there are some cultural rewards ready and waiting for anyone who wishes to defy the bitter weather conditions. These range from the excitement of experiencing contemporary, talent ripe for discovery, to observing old masters in a new light.
Botticelli Reimagined at the V&A
This exhibition spans centuries to examine the influence of Botticelli, illustrating how the Renaissance giant was out of fashion for centuries until Victorian artists expressed their fandom through their own work. This art shares space with an array of similarly influenced work, ranging from Andy Warhol to Dr No, concluding of course with some of the master’s original paintings.
Imran Qureshi: Where the Shadows Are So Deep at the Barbican
Pakistani artist Qureshi’s first London exhibition features miniature paintings in the uniquely structured space of the Barbican’s Curve. Qureshi has been praised for placing his own highly detailed spin on a centuries-old Mughal style of painting, with swathes of red paint on the walls adding to the enticing contrast of beauty and violence.
Hilma af Klint: Painting the Unseen at the Serpentine Gallery
This exhibition highlights the visionary Hilma af Klint, who decided some of her works would not be exhibited until 20 years after her death. This is in keeping with the paranormal and occult inspiration behind Klint’s abstract paintings, which feature bold colours and prismatic shapes, revealing work that compares to spiritual successors like Kandinsky and Malevich.
Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture at Tate Modern
The Tate’s amassing of Calder’s prolific output aims to overturn his reputation for being a lightweight, gimmicky tinkerer instead of a genuinely avant-garde sculptor with a passion for experimenting with motion. The exhibition appears to have pulled off the feat, doing justice to the man’s serious talent without stifling his playfulness and optimism.
Delacroix and the Rise of Modernism at the National Gallery
The full-blooded and collar-loosening work of Delacroix is the focus of a British exhibition for the first time in 50 years. Many of the paintings on display here are the work of artists the Frenchman influenced, such as Cézanne and Van Gogh, to highlight how Delacroix’s boldness made a transitional pathway for his more radical successors to flourish.