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Monthly Archives: February 2015

WOW – Woman of the World Festival at the Southbank Centre – 1st to 8th March 2015.

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WOW – Women of the World is a global festival (1 – 8 March 2015) celebrating the achievements of women and girls and also looks at the obstacles that prevent them from achieving their potential and contributing to the world. With a diverse range of talks and debates, music and performance, parties, a marketplace, networking and much more, the festival brings together women and men to speak about how they are making the world a fairer place and why it matters.

WOW – Women of the World has happened in London, Derry-Londonderry, Cardiff, Cambridge, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ethiopia, New York, Australia and Baltimore.

This festival celebrates the achievements of women and girls and also looks at the obstacles that prevent them from achieving their potential and contributing to the world. The festival is celebrating  its fifth year and offers  a week of talks, debates, concerts, film, comedy and workshops.

Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Bridget Christie leads the comedy line-up, while WOW’s annual night of laughs and music, ‘Mirth Control’, will star Sarah Millican, Sandi Toksvig and Sue Perkins. Speakers will include Caitlin Moran, Eve Ensler, Annie Lennox, Juliet Stevenson, Gemma Cairney and Kirsty Wark and BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour will broadcast live from the festival.

There will be a large number of events with the following ticketing:

Free events, just turn up.
Everyone can attend these. You don’t need a WOW Day Pass* or additional ticket.

Free events, but ticket required.
These events are also free, but take place in smaller venues or spaces. We ticket them to keep an eye on numbers. You can get a ticket for free online or in person from our Ticket Office.

Day Pass* & 3 Day Pass** events.
A wristband is required to attend these. You are provided with one when you buy either a WOW Day Pass* or WOW 3 Day Pass**. (Please note, your Day Pass or 3 Day Pass does not give you access to Stand Alone events.)
Buy WOW Friday Day Pass (6 March only) – £20
Buy WOW Saturday Day Pass (7 March only) – £20
Buy WOW Sunday Day Pass (8 March only) – £20
Buy WOW 3 Day Pass (6 – 8 March) – £45

Stand Alone events.
These are not included in any WOW Day Pass* or the WOW 3 Day Pass**. A separate ticket needs to be purchased for these events.

For information about the many events, visit the Festival 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, 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
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Shaun the Sheep London Trail – 28th March to 25th May 2015

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After the sight of models of Paddington Bear dotted all over London, it is now the turn of children’s favourite Shaun the Sheep.

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50 giant Shaun the Sheep sculptures, created by artists, celebrities and designers, will be placed in iconic locations and beautiful green spaces across London, to raise funds for Wallace & Gromit’s Children’s Charity, supporting children in hospitals across the UK.  The project will also see a trail  in Bristol this summer, to raise funds for Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Appeal and support Bristol Children’s Hospital.

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Both flocks will then go to auction to raise money for sick children in hospitals across the UK.

Aardman’s internationally-acclaimed character has recently starred in his own film called Shaun the Sheep, the Movie.

The London trail will take place from Saturday 28th March to Monday 25th May, and the Bristol trail from Monday 6th July to Monday 31st August.

For more information visit the Shaun in the City 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, 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

St Patrick’s Day in Trafalgar Square – Sunday 15 March 2015

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Everyone’s invited to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Trafalgar Square on Sunday 15 March. Come along and experience the best of Irish music, song dance, culture and arts – all for free!

In Trafalgar Square there’ll be an Irish food market, children’s activities and lots of Irish community organisations. You can also enjoy the best of Irish music, song and dance on the main stage.

Come and join the craic of the St Patrick’s Day Parade, with its crazy giant creatures, fun community floats, vibrant dance groups and Irish bands.

The 2015 Parade will form up from 10am for floats and 11am for walkers on Sunday 15 March from outside Green Park Station.

At 12 noon the  line-up will set off at a walk to thread its way up Piccadilly, along Lower Regent, the Mall and Cockspur Street, rounding Trafalgar Square and finishing up in Whitehall.

Everyone is welcome to participate, Irish or not, line the route to enjoy this family friendly spectacle.

The event is organised by the Mayor, with support from many Irish businesses, cultural organisations, musicians and artists.

If you would like further information, visit the event 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, 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

 

 

Ideal Home Show at Olympia – 20 Mar to 6 Apr 2015

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The Ideal Home Show will return to its original home of Olympia London for its 107th year. The world’s biggest home show was launched  at Olympia in 1908, has been transforming  Britain’s homes and gardens ever since.

The  seven dedicated show areas catering to every need and taste.  From interiors, to home improvements, with food, housewares, and woman, plus technology, gardens and shopping the enhanced sections give you more choice and bigger brands. Plus see exclusive show offers, new product launches and items you won’t find on the high street.

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Highlights  include fully built Show Homes and Gardens, room sets, the Greg Wallace restaurant and Champagne Bar, as well as many interactive theatres.  There will be a large number of celebrity ambassadors, chefs and experts on hand at the show to share their knowledge and skills through thousands of demonstrations and workshops.

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Opening Times:

Daily: 10am-6pm
Thu late night opening: 10am-9pm
Ticket Information

Ticket Prices On Door
In Advance

Weekday Adult
£17.50 Ticket Prices On Door
£12    In Advance

Weekend Adult
19.50
£14

Weekday Concession (Over 60’s)
£12.50
£10

Weekend Concession (Over 60’s)
£14.50
£12

Late Night Thursdays (after 5pm)
£5

Children Under 16
Free*

 

For more information or to book tickets, visit the 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, 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

 

Human Rights Watch Film Festival in London – 18th to 27th March 2015

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Human Rights Watch is one of the world’s leading independent organizations dedicated to defending and protecting human rights, their Film Festival encourages filmmakers around the world to address human rights subject matter in their work. Each year, the festival’s programming committee screens more than 500 films and videos to create a programme that represents a range of countries and issues. Once a film is nominated for a place in the programme, staff of the relevant division of Human Rights Watch also view the work to confirm its accuracy in the portrayal of human rights concerns.

The festival attracts films from new and established filmmakers, one of the highlights of the festival is the screening of 2015 Academy Award nominated The Salt of the Earth at the British Museum. Directed by Wim Wenders and Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, is a film that embarks the viewer on the journey of the photographer Sebastião Salgado, who for the last 40 years has been travelling through the continents in the footsteps of an ever-changing humanity.

Other highlights include Life is Sacred, the story of everyday violence in Colombia. No Land’s Song about banned female singers in Iran.

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What Tomorrow Brings follows the first all-girls school in a remote, conservative Afghan village. The Shelter charts a cold winter spent at an emergency shelter for homeless migrants in the wealthy city of Lausanne and Burden of Peace shows how reforms are blocked by criminals and corrupt politicians in Guatemala.

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Films will be shown at the Barbican, Curzon Soho, Ritzy Brixton and the British Museum.

For a full programme listing go to the Human Rights Watch 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, 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

Review : RHS London Botanical Art Show at the RHS Horticultural Halls – 27th to 28 February 2015

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Venue: RHS Horticultural Halls, Greycoat Street, Westminster, London SW1P 2QW

In the second of the RHS London shows, a series of  beautiful paintings by some of the world’s finest botanical artists will be on display at the RHS Horticultural Halls  from 27–28 February 2015.
In its sixth year, the show celebrates the beauty, technical artistry and scientific importance of botanical art. There is also an element of competition with artists from Thailand, Japan, Australia and Turkey joining British artists, all hoping to win a coveted Gold Medal. There are works in graphite, watercolour and pencil, gouache and acrylic, with subjects ranging from trees and fruit to vegetables and wild plants.

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At first glance, it seems strange that in the 21st century, botanical art is not just holding it own but flourishing. Whilst many people may associate botanical art  with the voyages of discovery in the 18th and 19th century, its history goes back into antiquity. During the Renaissance, artist such as Leonardo da Vinci and Albrecht Durer produced high quality botanical prints and in the 16th and 17th century the prints became an important part of the scientific revolution.

DSCN1250Kathy Pickles, Gold Medal winner

In the 19th and 20th centuries, botanical art prints became attractive as decorative pieces in their own right and became endlessly reproduced on a wide variety of materials.

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Hideo Horikoshi Gold Medal winner

Before the show opened the judging took place and it proved to be a successful event for the Japanese exhibitors who took four of the six gold medals awarded. Gold medal winners were Masako Mori, Hideo Horikoshi, Kumiko Takano, Kimiyo Maruyama, Gulnar Eski  from Turkey and  Kathy Pickles from London.

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Kumiko Takano, Gold Medal winner

Visitors cannot fail to be impressed with the standard of the works and it soon becomes clear that botanical art is not necessarily the exact reproduction of the plant or flower.

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Gulnar Eski  , Gold Medal winner

The finished painting is often a composite of many elements that allows the artist to show their creativity. It is this creativity that allows an attention to details that would get lost in a photograph.

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Masako Mori, Gold Medal winner

There is an opportunity for visitors to talk to the artists about their work and in some cases, purchase works and prints directly from the artist.

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Kimiyo Maruyama, Gold Medal winner

If you are inspired by the botanical art on display you can watch demonstrations by award-winning artists Julia Trickey and Susan Christopher-Coulson, Print-maker Hannah McVicar will be demonstrating her craft, and will be creating a unique print for sale at the show, and the Chelsea School of Botanical Art will also be running taster sessions for those who want to have a go themselves.

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There will also be the opportunity for visitors to buy a variety of art products and talk to representatives from florilegia societies and botanical art and illustration societies about their work and courses.

Special tours of the RHS Lindley Library will allow visitors to view works recently added to the impressive RHS collections and browse a special pop-up library.

The show will be of particular interest to those interested in botanical art , however it is of a more general interest, the quality of the art work is very impressive and there are plenty of side attractions if you fancy having a go yourself. It may also be of interest to those who would like to pick up a piece of original botanical art for decorative purposes.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

 Tickets:

Non-members tickets: £5

RHS members: free (with valid membership card)

For more information or to book tickets, visit the RHS 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, 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

Book Review : Inventing Impressionism – Paul Durand-Ruel and the Modern Art Market ( National Gallery )

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Inventing Impressionism: Paul Durand-Ruel and the Modern Art Market, edited by Sylvie Patry, with contributions by Anne Robbins, Christopher Riopelle, Joseph. J. Rishel and Jennifer A.Thompson, is published by and copyright of National Gallery Company Limited, 2015.

This book and the upcoming exhibition at the National Gallery explores how art dealer, Paul Durand-Ruel encouraged and exhibited the French Impressionists and played a crucial role in promoting the ‘new painting’ long before it achieved wide acceptance.The relationship of  Durand – Ruel  with the Impressionists has always been the subject of considerable debate, the contributors to the book state very clearly that the main aim of the exhibition and the book “is to enrich and renew our understanding of a figure who occupies a key position in the history of Art.” Much of the evidence in the book came from  gaining access and  investigating the Durand – Ruel gallery archives that recorded  purchases, sales, deposits and clients. It was hoped that within these transactions there would some insights into the image of Durand Ruel as a heroic backer of Impressionism when the movement was being attacked from all sides.

A friend of Durand Ruel described him as ” unrepentant risk- taker ” and the chapter that offers a portrait of Durand Ruel look into his origins to offer some psychological insights into his character. Paul Durand-Ruel  became a committed monarchist and practising Catholic throughout his life, however he did not believe in sectarianism and championed artists regardless of their political views or  beliefs.

Durand- Ruel’s father owned a gallery and it was within this environment that the young Paul learnt the art dealer’s trade. The Universal Exhibition of 1855  and especially the work of Delacroix had a great effect on the young man  and years later wrote ” It was the triumph of modern art over academic art…. and it reinforced the idea that I might perhaps, in some humble way, be of some service to true artists by helping them to be better understood and appreciated.”  It was the artists of the 1830 school (including Delacroix, Corot, the Barbizon School, Courbet and Daumier) who became the focus of Durand- Ruel’s  project to buy as many paintings as possible and create enough interest to sell at a reasonable profit. Although the project produced mixed results it was part of a learning strategy that would instruct Durand Ruel in his promotion of the Impressionists. At the outbreak of the Franco Prussian War, Durand – Ruel moved to London where he opened premises to exhibit works by French artists. In 1871, he was introduced to the artists Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro and began to show an interest in their work. However the return to Paris in late 1871 was marred by tragedy with the death of his young wife, this left him a widower with five young children.

However ,this predicament did not stop  his interest in  Impressionism, Monet  and Pissarro introduced him to other artists including Degas, Renoir, Sisley, Boudin, Morisot and Manet.  It was in 1872 that Durand- Ruel began to buy a considerable amount of paintings from the Impressionists, he was determined to follow the same pattern as when he supported the artists of the 1830 school. However he severely underestimated the amount of hostility aimed at Impressionists who were generally ridiculed by the French Art establishment.

By 1874, Durand Ruel was heavily in debt and was forced to sell  off  his extensive stock of Barbizon paintings and just avoided bankruptcy by negotiating with his creditors. Due to his circumstances he virtually  stopped buying from his Impressionist friends. He did manage to get some credit from a bank to buy paintings in 1880, but when the bank collapsed in 1882, he was forced to repay the loans. It was in this period that the myth of Durand- Ruel who risked everything for Impressionism gained some credence, however the contributors to the book suggest the real story was much more complex.

There was plenty of evidence that Durand – Ruel held a large stock of Impressionist paintings but he was also dealing in other paintings especially from his 1830 school. He also was not in isolation,  there was already an embryonic  market for Impressionist painting in which a number of dealers and collectors were involved. Perhaps more importantly was that for all Durand – Ruel’s personal relationships with the artists, he was also somewhat of a speculator who believed that if a market could be found for the paintings his fortune and reputation would be made. Whether it was design or desperation, Durand Ruel began to devise strategies to create a market for Impressionist paintings. He began to experiment with Solo rather than Group exhibitions, used art reviews to create interest and created a network of international galleries with unlimited access to potential buyers.

Although many of the exhibitions in Europe began to create some interest, the sales were generally disappointing, however Durand- Ruel’s trip to the United  States in 1885 proved to be a turning point in  his and the Impressionists  fortunes. The exhibition in New York was the first time  an Impressionist exhibition had been received favourably by the public and the press, collectors began to buy the paintings and gradually prices began to rise. In 1888, Durand Ruel opened a gallery in New York  and by 1894 was able pay off his debts. The interest in America eventually led to European galleries and museums showing greater interest and some recognition of the talent of the artists.

This book is fascinating on many levels and offers many insights into the beginnings of the Modern Art world, although Durand Ruel’s support of the Impressionists was not purely altruistic, he did provide both financial and moral support to artists who often lived in precarious situations. In 1885, Renoir wrote to him to show support, ‘ Do what they may, they (the public, press and art dealers) will never destroy your true quality: your love of art and your defence of living artists. In the future it will be your claim to fame.’   The fact that an exhibition and this book about Durand Ruel has been produced would perhaps validate Renoir’s prophesy.

This lavishly produced book with over 150 stunning colour illustrations addresses  some of major influences into the development of Impressionism and  the often mysterious relationship  of art and commerce. It is this relationship that is at the heart of the Durand Ruel story and the evidence in the book suggests he was a more complex character than previously thought. He was without a doubt a key figure in the recognition of Impressionism, but his motives are less clear cut,  although many in the art world would applaud his stance in support of artists, others in the commercial world would applaud his ability to build a fortune as an “unrepentant risk- taker. ”

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

If you would like more information about the exhibition or to buy a copy of the book, visit the National 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 January, 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