Exhibition Review : BP Portrait Award 2017 at the National Portrait Gallery – 22nd June to 24th September 2017

The BP Portrait Award, now in its 38th year at the National Portrait Gallery and 28th year of sponsorship by BP, is a highly successful annual art event aimed at encouraging artists to tackle the theme of painted portraiture within their work. The BP Portrait Award, one of the world’s most prestigious art competitions, has a first prize of £30,000, making it one of the largest for any global arts competition.

The BP Portrait Award is popular with artists with 2580 entries from 87 countries. It is also popular with the public, last year the BP Portrait Award exhibition received over 300,000 visitors. From the original entries, 53 portraits have been selected for the exhibition and the winners are selected from these portraits.

This year’s first prize was won by Suffolk based artist, Benjamin Sullivan for Breech! a portrait of his wife Virginia breastfeeding their eight month old daughter.

The second prize of £10,000 went to French painter and illustrator, Thomas Ehretsmann, for Double Portrait, depicting his pregnant wife Caroline.

The third prize of £8,000 went to Antony Williams for Emma his portrait of model turned friend, Emma Bruce, completed in his studio in Chertsey.

The BP Young Artist Award of £7,000 for the work of a selected entrant aged between 18 and 30 has been won by 26 year old New Zealand artist Henry Christian-Slane for Gabi, a portrait of his partner Gabi Lardies.

The winner of the BP Travel Award 2017, an annual prize to enable artists to work in a different environment on a project related to portraiture, was Casper White for his proposal to create works about music fans in clubs and concert venues in Berlin and Mallorca. The prize of £6,000 is open to applications from any of this year’s BP Portrait Award-exhibited artists, except the prize-winners.

The BP Travel Award 2016 winner Lithuanian artist Laura Guoke is displayed in the BP Portrait Award 2017 exhibition.

The winning portraits were selected and judged anonymously by a panel which included broadcaster Kirsty Wark and artist Michael Landy.

Part of the attraction of this free exhibition is to enjoy the wide variety of portraiture which features some famous and not so famous faces. The standard is consistently high and it is fun when you wander around the exhibition to pick out your own particular favourites and decide whether you agree with the judge’s choices.

The portrait can be seen at the National Portrait Gallery from Thursday 22 June when the BP Portrait Award 2017 exhibition opens to the public. Admission to the exhibition is free.

The BP Portrait Award 2017 exhibition will run at the National Portrait Gallery, London, from Thursday 22th June to Sunday 24th September 2017 and then go on tour to the Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery Exeter (4 October – 3 December 2017); Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh (December 2017 – March 2018); Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens (March – June 2018.)

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

If you would like to find out more about the exhibition, visit the National Portrait Gallery website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide.com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in 2014 , we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
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Dunkirk at the Science Museum in IMAX Format from 21 July 2017

Christopher Nolan’s hotly-anticipated feature film Dunkirk, is to screen in IMAX 70mm 2D film at the Science Museum on its worldwide opening weekend.

The Science Museum, one of only three venues in the UK showing Nolan’s epic cinematic event in the largest commercial film format, will screen the film in IMAX 70mm 2D film. IMAX 70mm film projection combines the brightest, clearest images at almost 10 times the resolution of standard 35mm film projection with specially created sound for a high-quality viewing experience.

Nolan has often used IMAX film and for Dunkirk, more footage was shot on IMAX film than in any other Nolan film, with extensive use of IMAX cameras in an innovative hand-held capacity.

The film is relates the events in the Second World War when hundreds of thousands of British and Allied troops are surrounded by enemy forces in Dunkirk.

The film’s cast includes Fionn Whitehead, Tom Glynn-Carney, Jack Lowden, Harry Styles, Aneurin Barnard, James D’Arcy and Barry Keoghan, with Kenneth Branagh, Cillian Murphy, Mark Rylance and Tom Hardy.

The creative team on Dunkirk included director of photography Hoyte van Hoytema, production designer Nathan Crowley, editor Lee Smith, costume designer Jeffrey Kurland and visual effects supervisor Andrew Jackson. The music was composed by Hans Zimmer.

Dunkirk screens at the Science Museum from 21 July 2017.

For more information and book tickets , visit the Science Museum website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
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Second Nature: The Art of Charles Tunnicliffe RA at the Royal Academy – 11th July to 8th October 2017

The Royal Academy presents Second Nature: The Art of Charles Tunnicliffe RA in the Academy’s Tennant Gallery from the 11th July 2017. Tunnicliffe is one of the best-known wildlife artists of the 20th century and an accomplished print-maker, Tunnicliffe won acclaim for his naturalistic depictions of birds and other wildlife. His subjects were meticulously observed but always depicted as a living part of the natural world, never as specimens.

The display will feature a selection of Tunnicliffe’s distinctive etchings and wood-engravings, some of which he presented to the RA following his election as a Royal Academician in 1954, as well as a set of watercolours that he exhibited at the RA Summer Exhibitions. Tunnicliffe was in great demand as a book illustrator, producing artwork for Ladybird books, Faber and Faber and other popular publishers. There will be a selection of Tunnicliffe’s book illustrations including the 1932 first illustrated edition of Henry Williamson’s Tarka the Otter and What to Look For Ladybird series, as well as examples of his high quality commercial designs such as Brooke Bond tea cards. The Royal Academy’s display is timed to coincide with the publication of a comprehensive new catalogue raisonné of Tunnicliffe’s prints, written by print historians Professor Robert Meyrick and Dr Harry Heuser.

Second Nature: The Art of Charles Tunnicliffe RA will have a dedicated area for families where they can read Ladybird Books and take part in a number of activities. The Royal Academy will also hold a programme of events for families, including storytelling and a family studio where children will be able to draw from real life animals as part of Open House London.

For more information or to book tickets, visit the Royal Academy website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
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Dorrance Dance – ETM: Double Down at Sadler’s Wells from 12th to 15th July 2017

Groundbreaking tap dancer and choreographer Michelle Dorrance, winner of a 2015 MacArthur Fellowship and “one of the most imaginative tap choreographers working today” (The New Yorker), brings her company Dorrance Dance to Sadler’s Wells this summer with the UK Premiere of ETM: Double Down opening on Wednesday 12 July.

Dorrance brings tap into the age of electronic music with collaborator Nicholas Van Young whose electronic tap boards make the stage talk back, as every step, swipe, and scrape sets off an element of sound, building musical loops, turning the stage into a musical instrument in its own right. With Afro-Brazilian, indie-pop, and even a bit of Adele triggered by the eight dancers’ footwork, ETM: Double Down takes the first American dance form to a new level.

For more information , visit the Sadler’s Wells website here

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Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power at Tate Modern – 12th July to 22nd October 2017

This summer Tate Modern will present Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power, a landmark exhibition exploring how these issues played out among and beyond African American artists from 1963 to 1983. At a time when race and identity became major issues in music, sport and literature, brought to public attention by iconic figures like Aretha Franklin, Muhammad Ali and Toni Morrison, ‘Black Art’ was being defined and debated across the country in vibrant paintings, photographs, prints and sculptures. Featuring more than 150 works by over 60 artists, many on display in the UK for the first time, Soul of a Nation will be a timely opportunity to see how American cultural identity was re-shaped at a time of social unrest and political struggle.

The show begins in 1963 with the formation of the Spiral Group, a New York–based collective. They questioned how Black artists should relate to American society, with key figures like Romare Bearden and Norman Lewis responding to current events in their photomontages and abstract paintings. Artists also considered the locations and audiences for their art – from local murals to nationally circulated posters and newspapers – with many turning away from seeking mainstream gallery approval to show artwork in their own communities through Black-owned galleries and artist-curated shows.

The exhibition will use archive photographs and documentary material to illustrate the mural movement, including the ‘Wall of Respect’ in Chicago and the ‘Smokehouse’ wall paintings in Harlem. The way artists engaged with street activism will be explored through posters and newspapers, such as the work of the Black Panther Party’s Culture Minister Emory Douglas, who declared “The ghetto itself is the gallery”.

The call for Black Power initiated powerful and inspiring images of political leaders such as Malcolm X and Angela Davis and even works of radical abstraction invoking Martin Luther King’s legacy.

Soul of a Nation will showcase this debate between figuration and abstraction, from Faith Ringgold’s American People Series #20: Die 1967 and Wadsworth Jarrell’s Black Prince 1971 to Frank Bowling’s Texas Louise 1971 and Sam Gilliam’s April 4 1969. A highlight will be Homage to Malcolm 1970 by Jack Whitten, who was awarded the National Medal of Arts by Barack Obama in 2015, which will be going on public display for the very first time.

Away from New York artists across the Unites States engaged in the Black Art debate. In Chicago in the late 1960s, Jeff Donaldson, Wadsworth Jarrell, Jae Jarrell, Barbara Jones-Hogu, Nelson Stevens and Gerald Williams, formed AfriCobra (the African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists), the only group to devise a manifesto for Black Art during this period.

Further themes investigated in the exhibition include the emergence of Black Feminism through the work of Betye Saar and Kay Brown, showing how the period marked a revolutionary moment of visibility for Black women, and debates over the possibility of a Black aesthetic in photography featuring work by Roy DeCarava.

For more information or to book tickets, visit the Tate Modern website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
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Africa Utopia returns to Southbank Centre – 15th and 16th July 2017

Southbank Centre’s annual Africa Utopia festival returns for its fifth year on Saturday 15 & Sunday 16 July 2017, with an exciting line up of leading musicians, artists, performers and thinkers from across Africa and its diaspora.

The festival celebrates the arts and culture of one of the world’s most dynamic and fast-changing continents and will encompass a vibrant mix of talks, workshops and performances for all ages, both free and paid-for. Confirmed so far for 2017’s Africa Utopia festival are the award-winning Afrobeat superstar, Fuse ODG and the Chineke! Orchestra both performing in the Royal Festival Hall.

Born in London and raised in Ghana, Fuse ODG is the founder of TINA – This is New Africa – a movement whose mission is ‘re-programming the world’s mental image of Africa, its people and its diaspora’ (15 July) and Chineke! Orchestra is Europe’s first all-Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) orchestra, performing classical repertoire to mark their third performance at the festival (16 July).

The weekend will also include an Africa Utopia Marketplace, with stalls and pop-up boutiques offering the latest in African and African-inspired fashion, accessories, books, art, homeware and workshops, as well as a bustling pop-up street food market, with over 13 stalls of authentic African cuisine from across the continent.

The full programme and list of performers will be released early May, 2017.

For more information , visit the Southbank Centre website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
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Review : Taste of London at Regent’s Park – 14th to 18th June 2017

Regent’s Park is once again transformed for a foodie festival with the return of Taste of London. The festival is in its 15th edition and has become a popular celebration of good food and drink and offers visitors the opportunity to sample dishes from some of the top London restaurants such as Duck & Waffle, Club Gascon, Roka, The Cinnamon Club, Oldroyd, Ember Yard, L’Autre Pied, Temper and many more.

The warm weather and sunny skies drew in the crowds for the Thursday afternoon session with a relaxing festival vibe with plenty of free samples for the hungry crowds to sample as they made their way around the festival site.

Whether it is the authentic Turkish delight in the Taste of Turkey or watching top chefs at the AEG Taste Theatre. the festival provides a large range of food and drink related experiences.

The smell from the aromatic dishes in the pop up restaurants may be difficult to resist but there are plenty of other foodie entertainment dotted around the site. The AEG Taste Theatre and other presentations have World-class chefs like Tom Kerridge, Thomasina Miers, Marcus Samuelsson, Jose Pizarro and Alex Atala, providing plenty of advice and an opportunity to see their expertise close up.

New this year is The Taste Residence which features some of the top chefs in the world, intimate groups of diners are treated to an exclusive fine dining experience designed, and delivered by the chefs themselves which include Alex Atala of 2 Michelin-starred D.O.M, World’s 50 Best’s Female Chef of the Year Ana Roš and Ollie Dabbous of 1 Michelin-starred Dabbous.

If you want to get more involved there are plenty of opportunities to take part in interactive masterclasses and demonstrations and try a range of complimentary activities including champagne, wine, whiskey and craft beer tastings.

If you are looking for something different, head towards the food markets where there are more than 200 artisan producers and manufacturers offering exclusive and unique products with plenty of opportunities to sample before you buy.

Part of the popularity of the Taste of London festival is that there is something for everyone, if you are looking for something special you can treat yourself in the VIP Lounge or sip Champagne in the Laurent – Perrier Club House. If you are a dedicated foodie there are over 170 dishes from 40 top restaurants to tempt you. However, the festival is equally appealing if you just want a relaxing session listening to music with plenty of food and drink options to enjoy.

Each session at the Taste of London lasts between 4-5 hours and that gives you plenty of time to enjoy your pick of restaurant dishes, browse the artisan stalls and enjoy some of the many attractions.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

For more information or book tickets, visit the Taste of London website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in 2014, we attract thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

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