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Exhibition Review : Botticelli Reimagined at the Victoria and Albert Museum – 5th March to 3rd July 2016

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The Victoria and Albert Museum present a major new exhibition which explores the variety of ways artists and designers from the Pre-Raphaelites to the present have responded to the artistic legacy of Sandro Botticelli (1445-1510), assembling 150 works from around the world. Although, Botticelli is now recognised as one of the greatest artists, the exhibition reminds us that he was largely forgotten for more than 300 years until his work was ‘rediscovered’ in the 19th century.

Botticelli Reimagined is the largest Botticelli exhibition in Britain since 1930 and  includes painting, fashion, film, drawing, photography, tapestry, sculpture and print. There are over 50 original works by Botticelli, alongside works by artists such as Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Edward Burne-Jones, William Morris, René Magritte, Elsa Schiaparelli, Andy Warhol and Cindy Sherman.

The exhibition begins with a screen showing excerpts from Dr No showing Ursula Andress emerging from the sea clasping a conch shell and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen in which Uma Thurman re-enacts The Birth of Venus.

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The first main section entitled Global, Modern, Contemporary illustrates how artists have taken aspects of  Botticelli’s imagery and incorporated them into their own works. Botticelli’s most famous work , The Birth of Venus which depicts the naked Venus emerging from a shell on the seashore is referenced by Andy Warhol’s Details of Renaissance , Yin Xin’s Venus After Botticelli , David LaChapelle’s Rebirth of Venus and a dress and trouser suit of patchwork panels from The Birth of Venus from Dolce & Gabbana’s 1993 collection. Botticelli’s influence is more widely considered by Bill Viola’s Going forth by Day and  5th surgery performance – Operation opera by ORLAN, This section also includes work by Tamara de Lempicka, Robert Rauschenberg, René Magritte and Maurice Denis.

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Rediscovery considers the impact of Botticelli’s art on the Pre-Raphaelite circle during the mid-19th century. Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Ruskin and Edward Burne-Jones all owned and were greatly influenced by Botticelli’s work. In this section a series of portraits by Burne – Jones and Rossetti, mostly featuring Jane Morris gives some insight into the way that the Pre-Raphaelites looked to the past for inspiration.

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Botticelli’s celebrated work, Primavera influences William Morris’ The Orchard and Evelyn De Morgan’s Flora. In this room are a couple of copies of The Birth of Venus by Edgar Degas and Gustave Moreau as well as Etienne Azambre’s Two Women copying Botticelli’s fresco of Venus and the Graces.

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Moving back in time, the final section of the exhibition arrives at Botticelli in his Own Time. A series of works by Botticelli show that he  was not only a wonderfully skilled artist but also ran a highly successful workshop which produced a large number of important works. Exhibits include his only signed and dated painting The Mystic Nativity , three portraits supposedly of the legendary beauty Simonetta Vespucci, and the remarkable Pallas and the Centaur, travelling to London for the first time.

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A small number of portraits of the elite of Renaissance Florence gives some context to the artist’s life and times before the show closes with two full-length paintings of Venus, reprising the heroine of The Birth of Venus, and the V&A’s Portrait of a Lady known as Smeralda Bandinelli which formerly owned by Rossetti.

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It is remarkable how some artists can produce work that remains influential over the centuries, This exhibition provides plenty of evidence that Botticelli is one of these artists. Whether it is through his influence on the Pre-Raphaelites or the way the iconic works such as the Birth of Venus has been endlessly reinterpreted in the late 20th especially. Although there is a running theme through the exhibition, in many ways it feels like three mini exhibitions in one. Due to the variety on display, the exhibition will have quite a wide appeal, each section has its own attractions and delights in an ambitious and interesting show.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

Botticelli Reimagined

5 March – 3 July 2016.

Admission £15 (concessions available).

V&A Members go free.

Advance booking is advised

For more information or to book tickets, visit the V&A 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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here

Exhibition Review : Performing for the Camera at Tate Modern – 18th February to 12th June 2016

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Tate Modern explores the relationship between photography and performance in their exhibition, Performing for the Camera.

Since the invention of photography in the 19th century, the genre has been concerned with showing art and performance, the exhibition brings together over 500 images spanning 150 years which document  performance works such as Yves Klein’s Anthropometrie de l’epoque blue 1960, a live painting event using the bodies of naked women, as well as key 60s performances by Yayoi Kusama, Marta Minujín and Niki de Saint Phalle.

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Some of the earliest works in the exhibition look at the way that photography began to used showing famous performers acting out their characters from the stage. Photographs from Nadar’s studio in 19th century Paris show the famous mime artist Charles Deburau acting out poses as the character ‘Pierrot’ and famous actress Sarah Bernhardt in a series of roles.

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Later works drawing on this same idea include Harry Shunk and Janos Kender with their photographs of dancer, Merce Cunningham in 1964. Eikoh Hosoe’s Kamataichi, a collaboration with the choreographer and founder of the Butoh movement Tatsumi Hijikata in 1969 is one of the first to have given equal authorial credit to the performing subject and the photographer.

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Ideas of self-identity are explored through works by Claude Cahun, Man Ray and Cindy Sherman, as well as projects like Samuel Fosso’s African Spirits 2008 where the artist photographs himself in the guise of iconic figures. The exhibition also looks at the ways that portraiture has been used by photographers like Lee Friedlander, Masahisa Fukase and Hannah Wilke.

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Marketing and self promotion have always played a major part in photography and recent masters of the form, artists Jeff Koons and Andy Warhol illustrate how identity can be formed and distorted for a particular event.

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In many ways, most of the exhibition illustrates the photographer and the photographed as two separate entities, however, the modern world of social media and selfies offers the subject as photographer which raises a series of questions about the lines between photography and performance. A recent work staged on Instagram by Amalia Ulman illustrates the ways that people are using their poses for photographs to seemingly find ways of validating their identity.

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Performing for the Camera is an interesting and thought-provoking exhibition that explores the relationship between photography and performance. From the earliest days of photography, there seems to have been an element of performing for the camera. Over the last 150 years, this performance has led to a wide range of applications from serious performances to more informal humour and improvisation. The exhibition provides of plenty of evidence that photography’s influence has grown considerably till it has now become a constant presence in the lives of millions, many now recording their own and others performances each day.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

Performing for the Camera

Tate Modern: Exhibition

18 February – 12 June 2016

Adult £16.00 (without donation £14.50)

Concession £14.00 (without donation £12.70)

If you would like further information or 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 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.
To find out more visit the website here

Review – Annie Leibovitz’s WOMEN: New Portraits Exhibition at the Wapping Hydraulic Power Station from January 16th to February 7th 2016

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The Wapping Hydraulic Power Station is the location for an exhibition by one of America’s leading photographers with the opening of Annie Leibovitz’s WOMEN: New Portraits exhibition.

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‘WOMEN: New Portraits’ a global tour of new photographs by Annie Leibovitz launches in London. Commissioned by UBS, the exhibition opens to the public on 16 January at Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, kicking off a 10-city world-wide tour. Access to the exhibition will be free. Photo by Stephen White, courtesy of UBS.

Wapping is known for its maritime connections and Wapping Hydraulic Power Station is an important relic of London’s industrial past which attracted the photographer, Leibovitz said: “It was so exciting to find Wapping Station here – we were looking for places that were unusual.”

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‘WOMEN: New Portraits’ a global tour of new photographs by Annie Leibovitz launches in London. Commissioned by UBS, the exhibition opens to the public on 16 January at Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, kicking off a 10-city world-wide tour. Access to the exhibition will be free. Photo by Stephen White, courtesy of UBS.

Women: New Portraits includes photographs of the likes of Amy Winehouse, Michelle Obama, Adele, Taylor Swift, Jane Goodall, Sheryl Sandberg, Cindy Sherman, Caitlyn Jenner, Amy Schumer and Aung San Suu Kyi and is a collection that focuses on “women of outstanding achievement” and is a continuation of Women, a project that Annie Leibovitz began over 15 years ago in collaboration with writer Susan Sontag.

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‘WOMEN: New Portraits’ a global tour of new photographs by Annie Leibovitz launches in London. Commissioned by UBS, the exhibition opens to the public on 16 January at Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, kicking off a 10-city world-wide tour. Access to the exhibition will be free. Photo by Stephen White, courtesy of UBS.

The exhibition features new photographs and work from the original series, as well as other unpublished photographs. In collaboration with UBS , a series of free learning programmes will accompany the exhibition which will explore ways of seeing through photography and working with young people in local schools and communities.

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Annie Liebovitz, New York City, 2012 © Annie Leibovitz

Annie Leibovitz began her career as a photojournalist for Rolling Stone in 1970 and in the past four decades as built up a great reputation based on a series of well-known portraits for Vanity Fair, Vogue and numerous other publications. Famous portraits include John Lennon and Yoko Ono just before he was killed, Demi Moore, Queen Elizabeth II, Sting, Lady Gaga and more recently Caitlyn Jenner.

Laura Poitras, New York City, 2015 © Annie Leibovitz WOMEN New Portraits Exhibition by Annie Leibovitz with Exclusive Commissioning Pa

Laura Poitras, New York City, 2015 © Annie Leibovitz WOMEN New Portraits Exhibition
Annie Leibovitz WOMEN: New Portraits exhibition commissioned by UBS, Wapping Hydraulic Power Station,16 Jan – 7  Feb

A walk around the exhibition allows you to appreciate the wide and diverse range of work and styles of one of the best known photographers in the world.  The run down industrial setting with large screens  provide an interesting backdrop to the exhibition and offers plenty of incentive to make the trip into London Docklands. The exhibition is free and will run from January 16th to February 7th 2016.

Annie Leibovitz’s new photographs, which have been commissioned by UBS, will be shown in 10 cities over the next 12 months. The tour starts in London before moving to Tokyo, San Francisco, Singapore, Hong Kong, Mexico City, Istanbul, Frankfurt, New York and Zurich.

Visitor Information

January 16th – February 7th 2016

Admission to the exhibition is free

Exhibition opening hours:

Monday – Thursday: 10am – 6pm

Friday: 10am – 8pm

Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 6pm

Address:

Wapping Hydraulic Power Station,

Wapping Wall,

London E1W 3SL:

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

If you would like further information about the exhibition, visit the UBS 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.
To find out more visit the website here